The hallway smelt of boiled cabbage and old rag mats.

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smilesun

Member
chinese
Hello,everyone.

There is a sentence from 1984 by George Orwell that I don't quite understand.

The hallway smelt of boiled cabbage and old rag mats.

what does "rag mats" mean?

Thank you very much!
 
  • JulianStuart

    Senior Member
    English (UK then US)
    Rags are used to make "rag mats" - not sure if you can Google the term - often the mats were created from old rags as a form of recycling/repurposing.
     
    Last edited:

    velisarius

    Senior Member
    British English (Sussex)
    1587202613105.png


    They are commonly crocheted from strips of old material, and in former times poor people who couldn't afford to buy a mat made their own. An old one would be pretty dirty, worn and unattractive.
     

    Barque

    Banned
    Tamil
    View attachment 40592

    They are commonly crocheted from strips of old material, and in former times poor people who couldn't afford to buy a mat made their own. An old one would be pretty dirty, worn and unattractive.
    That looks pretty good actually. Something like that would sell in India for about Rs.500, or US$6.50 but Rs.500 is worth much more here than $6.50 in the US.:)

    Ok, I'm exaggerating. Perhaps four dollars.
     

    velisarius

    Senior Member
    British English (Sussex)
    They are attractive when they are new and made from good fabric (remnants), as in the photo. When they're made from old rags, such as worn and faded curtains, they soon look nasty.
     
    They are attractive when they are new and made from good fabric (remnants), as in the photo. When they're made from old rags, such as worn and faded curtains, they soon look nasty.
    There is also the matter of how they are being used. In this case, they are door mats, to be used specifically for wiping your wet or muddy shoes before you walk from the hallway into the individual apartments/flats. Such things would soon begin to have an odor...
     
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