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CURTAIN OF THE RAWDA NEXT TO THE SHRINE OF THE PROPHET MUHAMMAD
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CURTAIN OF THE RAWDA NEXT TO THE SHRINE OF THE PROPHET MUHAMMAD

WITH THE TUGHRA OF SULTAN MAHMUD II, CIRCA AH 1223-1255/1808-1839 AD

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CURTAIN OF THE RAWDA NEXT TO THE SHRINE OF THE PROPHET MUHAMMAD
WITH THE TUGHRA OF SULTAN MAHMUD II, CIRCA AH 1223-1255/1808-1839 AD
Of rectangular form, the black silk ground embroidered with heavy silver and silver-gilt thread, divided into three areas, the central one with large silver-gilt tughra within a laurel wreath between two twisted columns with foliate features and draped with swags and garlands, the upper area with central wreath containing dense silver-gilt inscription flanked on each side by a star encircled by scrolling acanthus, beneath this a frieze with the shahada in silver muhaqqaq, the lower panel with neo-classical vegetal motif, the whole surrounded by vegetal border, silver thread slightly oxidized, small holes in silk, conserved, rebacked, with collapsible stretcher
88 x 45in. (226 x 115cm.)
Special notice

VAT rate of 5% is payable on hammer price plus buyer's premium.
Sale room notice
The metallic threads have been tested. The gold thread appears to be solid, with little or no silver content.

Lot Essay

The Ottoman Sultan Mahmud II (r.AH 1223-1255/1808-1839 AD) was well-known for his interest in calligraphy. This bears not only his tughra, but also his signature, making it clear that this piece was personally designed by the Sultan himself.

The inscription in the roundel at the top reads:
"Between my grave and my minbar (pulpit), lies a rawda (garden) similar to the meadows of heaven" (Hadith).
Below this:
"Know that there is no God but Allah and Muhammad is His Messenger". To the left of this in gold is the signature of the Sultan:
"Written by Al-Ghazi Mahmud b. Abdulhamid Khan"
Below this is the Sultan's tughra, beside it the word Adli.

There is a similar piece also with the tughra of Mahmud II in the Topkapi Palace Museum in Istanbul, published in Hulya Tezcan: Astar al-Haramayn, Istanbul, 1996, no. 51.
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