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The flax plant is one of the plants humans have grown and used. Linen cloth was already made at least 6,000 years ago in Egypt and Mesopotamia. This makes linen one of the oldest fibers and cloths used by humans, besides wool and hemp. Linen and hemp were the most important fiber plants in Europe for a long time. Linen was for example also used to wrap Egyptian mummies.
In recent centuries linen has largely been replaced by cotton and synthetic materials, which are cheaper.