Before answering the question, tell me, what do you think fabric is? According to the dictionary, the meaning of fabric is ‘cloth produced by weaving or knitting natural or synthetic fibres’. So, silk fabric means silk cloth. Silk fabric production is known as sericulture.
Everyone wants to have a collection of silk saree or dress made up of silk cloth. Because silk clothes are very graceful, very elegant.
Silk fabric originated in China. There is a fascinating story about the discovery of silk fabric. It is said that silk was discovered around five thousand years ago. The story is – one day the Chinese empress Si Ling Chi was having tea in the palace garden, sitting under a mulberry tree and suddenly a cocoon from the branch of the tree fell in the cup. Then she watched with surprise that a strong thread separated out itself from the cocoon. And thus silk fabric was discovered. For nearly 3000 years silk fabric production was exclusively under the control of China.
But gradually silk fabric production could not be kept secret by the Chinese. It started spreading outside China. Sericulture started to spread throughout the Asia and according to some sources, Korea was the first country which came to know the secret of sericulture. The route which helped to spread the trade of fabulous silk fabric, later named after this fabric, is the Silk Road. It was only sometime later that this silk fabric reached India. Ultimately the silk fabric production spread in the European market.
Silk Road (shown by red line)