This book brings together twenty essays on diverse topics in the history and science of knots. It is divided into five parts, which deal respectively with knots in prehistory and antiquity, non-European traditions, working knots, the developing science of knots, and decorative and other aspects of knots.Its authors include archaeologists who write on knots found in digs of ancient sites (one describes the knots used by the recently discovered Ice Man); practical knotters who have studied the history and uses of knots at sea, for fishing and for various life support activities; a historian of lace; a computer scientist writing on computer classification of doilies; and mathematicians who describe the history of knot theories from the eighteenth century to the present day.In view of the explosion of mathematical theories of knots in the past decade, with consequential new and important scientific applications, this book is timely in setting down a brief, fragmentary history of mankind's oldest and most useful technical and decorative device — the knot.

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