Subscribe to Archaeology

ENGLAND

July/August 2021

JA21 ATW EnglandENGLAND: Authorities today have technological tools at their disposal to help identify forged documents. Hundreds of years ago, English officials had at least one—sheepskin. Analysis of hundreds of historical legal documents revealed that beginning in the 13th century, sheepskin parchment was overwhelmingly preferred by lawyers to calfskin or goatskin. Because of sheepskin’s high fat content and unique texture, any attempt to erase or change what was written on it left visible blemishes and obvious signs that fraud might have been committed.

Advertisement

Advertisement


Advertisement