Many important examples of Ottoman velvet are preserved in the form of liturgical vestments and may be found in the museums of Russian monasteries, such as the Zagorsk State Historical and Art Museum outside Moscow, and in some Eastern European churches. The use of Ottoman textiles in a Russian Orthodox context is recorded as early as 1681, in a painting located in the Iconostasis of the Archangel Cathedral within the Kremlin, Moscow which shows St Stephen clothed in a chasuble of Ottoman velvet (Atasoy et al., 2001, p. 238 fig.159).
Akin to a cloak, or the Orthodox phelonion, a cope is cut in a hemispherical shape, without sleeves, and fastened at the front. In the present example, the ornamental ‘hood’ and border are of a different textile, probably later in date, to the body of the cope. In the Historical Museum, Stockholm, there is a comparable cope combining Ottoman woven fabric with a hood and border of a different material. This example is dated to before 1645 and combines Turkish serâser with Polish embroidery, (Geijer, 1951, p.108, no.56). The body of the present cope is attributable to seventeenth-century Ottoman Turkey on account of its large motifs, ogival lattice and flower-heads, here comprising carnations and tulips sprouting from a rose. The combination of a delicate flower-head motif and ogival strapwork, is found in a number of comparable panels dated to the 17th century, see for example a panel in the Topkapi Palace Museum, Istanbul, inv. no. 13/1470 and Atasoy et al., 2001, p.314, figs. 336 and 337. For a panel of the same velvet, please see lot 151.