This section is from the "A Complete Dictionary of Dry Goods" book, by George S. Cole. Also available from Amazon: A complete dictionary of dry goods and history of silk, cotton, linen, wool and other fibrous substances,: Including a full explanation of the modern processes ... together with various useful tables.
Baize. [Spanish plural for bay] In the 16th century a light woolen fabric of a brownish-red or bay color (whence its name) was manufactured in Europe and called bay-cloth. At present, baize is a fine woolen stuff with a close nap on one side, dyed in plain colors, usually green or red. It is chiefly used for linings, desk and table covers and curtains, but when first introduced, in 1541, it was a much thinner and finer material, and was used for clothing; specifically, in theatres the plain curtain lowered at the end of the play.