1) A cotton or linen fabric, decorated with a pattern composed of small geometric motifs, usually diamonds.

The earliest references link it with fabrics of Byzantine or Levantine origin, rather than from Ypres in Flanders, a speculative explanation which has not historical or etymological basis. It was used initially for towels, table-cloths and the like: 1437 cum duobus towels de diaper, York

1567 one Dosen of bordclothes whereof two of Dyap[er], Fixby

1640 a linen table cloth and a dyaper, Elmswell. Diaper napkins are noted from the early sixteenth century: 1532 vj napkyns of plane cloth and vj of diapar, Hawton, Nottinghamshire

1535 ij dosyn napkings of diaper, Stillingfleet

1582 iij dyper napkinges, Faxfleet. Note: 1669 3 diber table cloths, Selby.

dates 1437 1532 1535 1567 1582 1640 1669

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