About the Antique Rugs of the Future Project

Sheep Breeds of Azerbaijan

Sorting, Washing, Carding, Spinning

"The advantages of handspun yarn to machine spun yarn"

Rediscovery of Ancient Natural Dyes
Our Natural Dyestuffs


Difference between synthetically and naturally dyed rugs

Weaving and Finishing Steps

Galleries of ARFP Caucasian Azerbaijani Rugs



A fragment of a 17th-century Anatolian rug, Turk ve Islam Eserleri Museum in Istanbul, via Hali spring 2007

This is an unusual large fragment of a 17th century central Anatolian rug from the astonishing collection of theTiirk ve Islam Eserleri Museum in Istanbul. The rug has just been conserved in preparation for theTIEM's special exhibition for ICOC XI.

In fact the rug has been published once before, in 1999, in Nazan Olcer and Walter Denny's Anatolian Carpets: Masterpieces from the Museum ofTurkish and Islamic Arts Istanbul, where it was duscussed at some length by Professor Denny, but as that superb luxury volume, published by Ahmed Ertug, was priced at $1000, not too many HALI readers will have seen it.

There are no direct comaparisons of which we are aware for the elaborately stylised field design, which Denny considers to be derived from a textile design, but forms echoing elements in East and Central Anatolian yastiks and prayer rugs are apparent, and the border pattern, here on an ivory ground, can also be seen on a blue ground, in an undoubtedly old Turkish medallion carpet in the Islamic Art Museum in Berlin (no. 84, 898, see Friedrich Spuhler, Oriental Carpets, 1988, pi.28, p. 171). The scrolling leaves in the field (perhaps Turkish 'sickie-leaves') combine to form in-and out palmette shapes, but the plant forms used throughout have a zoomorphic ambiguity which helps to stir the imaginations of those who love early Turkish carpets. The spidery tracery within the leaf forms reflects the underlying spiralling forms of Ushak medallion rugs.

It is interesting to note that there is a obvious attempt to create a corner solution in the border seen in the sole surviving corner of the present rug, a characteristic that is considered "Persinate" rather than Turkish.