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Royal Carpet with Silk and Metal Thread

Royal Carpet with Silk and Metal Thread

1600-1625

Brocaded gilt- and silver-metal thread; cotton warp, cotton and silk wefts; silk pile, asymmetrical knot, 295 per sq. in.

Average: 205.7 x 142.3 cm (81 x 56 in.)

Purchase from the J. H. Wade Fund 1926.533

Description

Brilliant colors of silk carpet-pile form this rich foliate and floral pattern on (originally shiny) gold- and silver-thread grounds. This radiant Iranian carpet was woven in a royal workshop of Shah ’Abbas I in Isfahan. The Shah presented similar coveted carpets as imperial gifts to kings of Islamic and Christian countries. In Denmark, one carpet looks sparkling new because it is reserved for coronations. This group with silk and metal thread is mistakenly called "Polish," based on one displayed in the Polish exhibit at the Paris World Fair in 1878. Unlike these opulent carpets, most 16th- and 17th-century Iranian carpets were woven with wool, many of which served as models when the industry was revived in the late 19th century.

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