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A PERSIAN VASE TECHNIQUE WOOL AND OCCASIONAL METAL THREAD CARPET, the shaded raspberry-red field with a lattice of open scrolling arabesques linked by palmettes enclosing various shaped panels of a wide variety of floral sprays, in a shaded golden yellow border of palmettes, arabesques and angular flowering vine between tan and indigo meandering flowering vine stripes, probably 18th Century (some areas of wear and damage)

Details
A PERSIAN VASE TECHNIQUE WOOL AND OCCASIONAL METAL THREAD CARPET, the shaded raspberry-red field with a lattice of open scrolling arabesques linked by palmettes enclosing various shaped panels of a wide variety of floral sprays, in a shaded golden yellow border of palmettes, arabesques and angular flowering vine between tan and indigo meandering flowering vine stripes, probably 18th Century (some areas of wear and damage)
15ft. x 9ft.3in. (457cm. x 281cm.)

Lot Essay

This carpet has a structure related to those of the vase carpets although with important differences. The warps are cotton and very strongly depressed. There are two thin sinuous wefts of cotton while the central 'hidden' weft is thicker. This third weft is made of either wool or goat's hair of a natural brown occasionally dyed a pale red and sometimes a natural white. The occasional areas of metal thread in the pile are in the bases or centres of the larger palmettes and flowerheads. The metal thread is woven in a herringbone pattern and has often now developed into a hole.

On its unusual structure it carries a design that relates closely to a number of rugs with a correct 'vase' structure. Dr May Beattie (Carpets of Central Persia, Sheffield exhibition catalogue, Westerham, Kent 1976) included a number a number in this exhibition, most of which are dated to the seventeenth century. Vase carpets are shown with designs of interlaced arabesques in the field (nos.29 and 32) while others have related designs in the border. A second group with single plane lozenge lattices enclose a comparable variety of flowering trees. Even the border is stiffer but still related to that of no.14. Dr Annette Ittig has suggested ('A Group of Inscribed Carpets from Persian Kurdistan', in HALI, vol.4, no.2, pp.124-127) a link between the lattice ground 'vase' carpets and the 'Garrus' design of nineteenth century North West Persia. The angularity of the palmettes in the present border could also indicate a similar origin, placing this carpet as an intermediate stage in the development between these two well-known types
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