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Barcelona, Spain. "Fabricas Berenguer." 5 1/4 x 9 1/4 inches. Tiny tear at top of label, almost indiscernible. (Item ID: 2810)

The industrialized textile production of the first half of the 19th century gave birth to the printed textile label (sometimes referred to as a "linen label"), which appeared in a number of formats and had three functions. It was used to identify bales of material in bulk, in bolts, and in individual fabric lengths. The fabric label was smaller that the bale and bolt label and was often heavily embossed, cut out, or decorated with chromolithographs, or multi colored woodcut illustrations. Many of the embossed and/or cut out labels were made on silver or gold paper. The frequent oxidation on these labels after more than a hundred years gives them a lovely patina.

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