A SILK COVERING PANEL
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A SILK COVERING PANEL

OTTOMAN TURKEY, 17TH CENTURY

Details
A SILK COVERING PANEL
OTTOMAN TURKEY, 17TH CENTURY
Probably from the tomb of the Prophet Muhammad, comprising a complete loom width including selvages, the olive-green ground divided by horizontal chevrons into a series of alternating major and minor bands of inscriptions in vigorous muhaqqaq, mounted, stretched and glazed
10 x 25½in. (127 x 65cm.)
Literature
Almut von Gladiss, Islamische Teppiche und Textilien, Hannover, 1987, no.30, p.39. (catalogued as 18th century).
Special notice

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Lot Essay

The inscriptions read as follows.
Top broad band:
The call to god to bless Muhammad, his family, and his companions
Top narrow band:
Qur'an, sura xxxiii (al-azhab), parts of v.40
Second broad band:
The shahada
Second narrow band:
Qur'an, sura xxxiii (al-azhab), v.56.

The decoration on this woven silk textile follows the standard form of 17th century Ottoman tomb covers, with major and minor epigraphic bands within chevrons. However, all of the major inscriptions are blessings on the Prophet Muhammad, and not anyone else, suggesting very strongly that this piece is from the covering of the Tomb of the Prophet himself in Al-Madina.

A very similar piece was exhibited in the 1985 exhibition Unity of Islam at the King Faisal Foundation, illustrated in the exhibition catalogue of the same name, London, 1985, pp.184-85, and in Petsopoulous, Y. (Ed.): Tulips, Arabesques and Turbans, Decorative Arts from the Ottoman Empire, London 1982, pl.158.
The Unity of Islam catalogue also mentions a panel of identical design in the Museé Historique des Tissus, Lyon, published in Anthony Welch: Calligraphy in the Arts of the Muslim World, Asia Society, 1979, no.34. A larger similar weaving was sold in these Rooms 26 April 2006, lot 51A.
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