In the 14th and 15th centuries, Arras, France was a thriving textile town. The industry specialised in fine wool tapestries which were sold to decorate palaces and castles all over Europe. Few of these tapestries survived the French Revolution as hundreds were burnt in to recover the gold thread that was often woven into them. Arras
is still used to refer to a rich tapestry no matter where it was woven.
By the 16th century, Flanders had become the centre of European tapestry production. By the end of the 16th century, the Northern Netherlands became the most important producers of tapestries, and Delft and Amsterdam became the most important tapestry cities.