The Escorial journey can truly withstand both time and distance.
Hailing from Scotland, it was the foresight of Eliza Furlong which saw her bring these sheep to Tasmania, Australia, in 1829. Today, from the source in Australia and New Zealand to the discerning Escorial customers throughout the world,it can be said Escorial has made a complete cycle.
Originating in North Africa’s Mahgreb these small sheep made their way to Spain with the Moors. After the Spanish army prevailed the Moors left their flocks in Spain. The first selection of these flocks became the property of the Spanish Royalty, their fleeces revered through royal circles of
Europe for making exquisite cloaks and cloth. The El Escorial palace was built overlooking these vast plains. King Phillip II, intrigued with these special sheep, housed a flock in the palace grounds, it was here they became known as the Escorial flock.
In Spain a royal decree was set that no Escorial sheep were to leave the country. But in 1765 King Charles of Spain broke this decree and gifted his cousin, The Elector of Saxony, 100 of his Escorial sheep. Through careful breeding the Elector
of Saxony grew these flocks, the wool known as the most prized in the world at this time. During the Napoleonic wars the Escorial flocks were dispersed and lost, the only flocks left remained in Saxony.
In 1829 Eliza Furlong, a foresighted Scottish woman, selected 120 of the best of the Saxony flocks and set sail for Australia. In 1830 Eliza and her two sons landed in Tasmania and to this day the flocks have been kept
pure by a small group of dedicated growers. The flocks in Saxony died out in World War 2, making the small Australian flocks the only remaining pure strain descending from the Escorial flocks.
In 1967, Peter Radford visited Tasmania and developed a passion for the distinctive properties of this fibre. Together with growers and
textile craftsmen, Peter redeveloped recipes of how to bring out the best in this fibre in the finished garment. It was here Escorial was reborn.
Crafted only in Scotland, England and Italy
Today Escorial can be found throughout the world – in high performance men’s and women’s suiting’s, knitwear, accessories and home wares. The utmost care goes into the Escorial sheep,
grazing in their natural sanctuaries in Australasia, the attention to detail that goes into every step of Escorial presents the customer with a luxurious garment of performance, provenance and rarity.