"hung with heavy, I think Venetian, tapestries"
Tapestries began to be made in Europe during medieval times, both for decoration and protection against cold drafts. They are woven on a vertical loom; gold, silver or silk thread were often used to denote wealth. When kings travelled on a progress or visit abroad, they would often roll up tapestries and take them along with their entourage. Germany and Switzerland were the first European countries to specialise in their manufacture, with the Netherlands and France also developing expertise. Ultimately, Flemish tapestries were deemed the finest due to their particularly exquisite craftsmanship and use of colour. Popular themes for tapestries included royal and noble crests and emblems, Biblical and Classical icons, and hunting scenes. Venetian tapestries bore the rich influence of the Renaissance, though artisans often hailed from the other countries in Europe known for their skills.