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To: wildbill

I have a question, perhaps some educated FReeper might know the answer to?

One observation this poster made visiting China was that Chinese traditionally also had the custom of using a red carpet, to signify an honored welcome.

Prior to Marco Polo, the East and West really did not interact much.

How is it, both East and West, ended up using a red carpet to signify the same thing?

Was it an imported, custom originally from the East, or actually a rather remarkable coincidence?

9 posted on 04/18/2012 6:56:57 AM PDT by Cringing Negativism Network (Is Buffett's comfort with "Obama" simply comfort with the word "Omaha" his home and birthplace?)
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To: Cringing Negativism Network

Per wikipedia:

The earliest known reference to walking a red carpet in literature is in the play Agamemnon by Aeschylus, written in 458 BC. When the title character returns from Troy, he is greeted by his vengeful wife Clytemnestra who offers him a red path to walk upon:

“Now my beloved, step down from your chariot, and let not your foot, my lord, touch the Earth. Servants, let there be spread before the house he never expected to see, where Justice leads him in, a crimson path.”

Agamemnon, knowing that only gods walk on such luxury, responds with trepidation:

“I am a mortal, a man; I cannot trample upon these tinted splendors without fear thrown in my path.”

* * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Maybe the Chinese “acquired” the idea from the west? Buddhism would have been a way for China to become familiar with western habits via Persia.

10 posted on 04/19/2012 1:32:40 PM PDT by SatinDoll
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