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Carpet fragment

Carpet fragment

  • Place of origin:

    Caucasus (made)

  • Date:

    1850-1900 (made)

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

Physical description

Storage bag, plain soumak with some diagonal and vertical warp wrapping.

NB: wide sides and base woven as one.

WARP: light brown wool; Z3S; 328 threads per inch (94 per dm). The soumak has been worked overall the warp ends, but the plainweave missed one thread in four to reduce the bulk. In the base the warp is alternately paired and single with 21 threads per inch (83 per dm). On completion the unwanted warp threads were cut away.

WEFT; base: red and yellow wool; Z-spun, unplied, 2 parallel threads; 19-25 threads per inch (approx. 80 per dm). Some of the weft has been woven as wedges and this allows the base of the bag to 'give' a little during use.

Sides: Foundation: white cotton; Z2S; 1 shoot after each row of soumak.
Soumak: 9 colours: Z2S: red, light red, orange, yellow (faded), dark green (faded to dark blue), blue, dark brown wool; Z2S; white cotton; soumak technique is over 4 warp threads and back under 2.

SIDE FINISH: all sides have returned weft. Decorative oversewing used to assemble bag, principally in red, blue, dark green wool and white cotton.

END FINISH: plainweave with yellow (faded) wool at one end and red and then yellow at the other. The warp threads have been grouped as alternate single and pair (see above).

Side panels: Lower - plainweave on the side panels in red wool; Upper - plainweave in dark brown and then yellow wool. All ends are turned and stitched in place.

Seven handles remain along the upper edge; made of a mixture of cotton, jute (added while in use) and goat and camel hair.

DESIGN; Base: plainweave in bands of red and yellow. Side and end panels: there are seven bands of geometric design. The central, deep band is of six-sided, hooked and linked motifs; bands 2 and 6 have a red ground with angular 'S' motifs on central stem all infilled with small crosses; bands 1, 3, 5, and 7 have a yellow ground with zigzag in various colours; all these bands are separated by narrow bands of solid colour or of white cotton and blue or red wool in alternating diagonal blocks.

Catalogue date: 15.7.98

Place of Origin

Caucasus (made)


1850-1900 (made)


Length: 48 cm side, including turnover, Width: 101.5 cm side, Length: 53 cm end, including turnover, Width: 51.5 cm end, Length: 51 cm base, including turnover, Width: 102 cm

Production Note

c.f. Bennett (1981) pub. "Antique Collectors' Club" Caucasian Rugs
p. 372. Nos. 491, 492, 493. " The attribution of these bags is controversial. ... can be found attributed to north-west Persia, East Anatolia or the Southern Caucasus."

Mentioned and illustrated in "Caucasian Rugs in the V & A", by M. Franses and R. Pinner (intro. by Donald King). Hali 1980, Vol. 3, No. 2, p.96, 111, 114.


Wool; Cotton; Jute; Goat hair; Camel hair


Middle East Section

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