Although these Coptic textiles date from a later period, they continue a tradition that stretched back to classical Greece and Rome. The technology for weaving cloth, as well as the materials used for both the textiles and the dyes, remained relatively constant over time. Furthermore, many of the motifs seen on Coptic textiles are reminiscent of patterns found on art objects from earlier periods, and similar designs are found on sculpture, architectural monuments, decorated pottery, and jewelry.
Many of these textile fragments were cut from the colorful borders that once enlivened light-colored linen clothing. Some fabrics, however, were woven with an overall pattern; these patterned textiles were used both for clothing and for domestic furnishings, such as tablecloths, cushions, and wall hangings.