from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. The act or process of spinning, drawing, or twisting into threads.
  • n. The act or process of reeling raw silk from cocoons.
  • n. A reel used in drawing silk from cocoons.
  • n. An establishment where silk is reeled.


  • In one appalling calamity, a hundred women died in a fire that engulfed a silk filature because the owner had locked them in from the outside.

    The Last Empress

  • One of the worst places to work was a silk factory, or filature.

    The Last Empress

  • In the “Thai Polyester Fiber” case we can analyze the multitude of problems encountered by two French firms involved in constructing and installing a $50-million polyester polymerization and filature plant in Thailand, in a joint venture with a major local business group.

    Strategic Management in Developing Countries Case Studies

  • We have described the processes by which cocoons are ordinarily cooked and brushed, these being the first processes of the filature.

    Scientific American Supplement, No. 620, November 19,1887

  • Each filature endeavors as far as possible to collect, stifle, and dry the cocoons in its own neighborhood; but dried cocoons, nevertheless, give rise to an important commerce, having its center at Marseilles.

    Scientific American Supplement, No. 620, November 19,1887

  • Before the silk was reeled off the cocoons would, of course, go through another and more thorough classification under the hands of the experts at the filature, as the reeling factory was called.

    The Story of Silk


The word 'filature' comes from a Latin word meaning "to spin".