Jute was used for making textiles in the Indus valley civilization since the 3rd millennium BC. In classical antiquity, Pliny recorded that jute plants were used as food in Ancient Egypt. It may have also been cultivated by the Jews in the Near East. Jute is used chiefly to make cloth for wrapping bales of raw cotton, and to make sacks and coarse cloth. The fibers are also woven into curtains, chair coverings, carpets, area rugs, hessian cloth, and backing for linoleum. The fibers are used alone or blended with other types of fiber to make twine and rope.