This unusual Ushak rug comes from a small group with variants on the normal "star" or "medallion" designs. It combines two different types of medallion, the first an octagonal star in the centre, the second forming the quarter-medallions in the corners. Only one carpet shows these motifs combined in the same way, a larger carpet with more than one repeat of the design that is now in the Philadelphia Musuem of Art (Ellis, Charles Grant: Oriental Carpets in the Philadelphia Museum of Art, Philadelphia, 1988, no.25, pp.72-5). That example has clearer drawing than the present rug and is probably a little earlier in date.
Each of these medallions appears on its own in other Ushak carpets which have been dated as early as the late 15th century. Multiple repeats of the central medallion, that is found here, only appear on one carpet, formerly in the Meyer Müller Collection, Zürich, and now in the Khalili Collection (Rogers, J.M.: Empire of the Sultans, Ottoman Art from the Nasser D. Khalili Collection, exhibition catalogue, London, 1995, no.134, pp.198-9). Multiple repeats of the corner part-medallions being used as the main motifs appear on more carpets including ones in the Detroit Institute of Arts, formerly exhibited in Milan (Eskenazi, John: Il Tappeto Orientale dal XV al XVIII secolo, exhibition catalogue, London, 1981, pl.11, p.76), one in the Marshall and Marilyn Wolf Collection (Denny, Walter: The Classical Tradition in Anatolian Carpets, Washington D.C., 2002, no.38, pp.100-1), and on a carpet formerly in Berlin but destroyed in the Second World War (Ellis, op.cit, figs.25a and 25b).
The present rug has every appearance of a village weaving and was probably woven for local use in the Ushak district rather than on commission from the Court in Istanbul. Its details however are very close to the court weavings; even the border design is one that is also found, with very slight differences, as the minor border on two of the five larger rugs, the Detroit and Milan examples, noted above.