The Fremlin Carpet thumbnail 1
The Fremlin Carpet thumbnail 2
+4
images
Image of Gallery in South Kensington
On display at V&A South Kensington
South Asia, Room 41

The Fremlin Carpet

Carpet
ca. 1640 (made)
Artist/Maker
Place Of Origin

Mughal carpets with animal scenes in the field are not uncommon, but this one is unique because it has the coat-of-arms of the Fremlin family incorporated into the field and borders. It was commissioned by William Fremlin who served in India as an official of the East India Company from 1626-44, and who ended his career there as President of the Council of Surat. It is likely that the carpet was made towards the end of his career, probably in Lahore (today in Pakistan), which was a known centre of carpet production at the time.
The Fremlin coat of arms includes an elephant as its crest, but this does not appear to be connected with William's career in India, as the arms were first granted to the family in 1567.


object details
Categories
Object Type
Materials and Techniques
Woollen pile on cotton
Brief Description
Woollen pile carpet 'The Fremlin Carpet', probably made in Lahore, ca. 1640
Physical Description
Woollen pile carpet bearing the Fremlin coat-of-arms. The ground is red with a deep blue border. The pattern consists of floral, animal and bird motives interspersed with the coat-of-arms both in the main field and in the border.



Cotton warp and weft. Sehna knotting with three shots of weft between each line of knots. About 224 knots per square inch (16 knots per warp inch; 14 knots per weft inch). Warp Z6S (or in some places Z5S), weft Z3S. In colours of white, red, blue, brown, green and yellow.
Dimensions
  • Length: 599cm
  • Width: 249cm
  • Length: 236in
  • Width: 98in
Style
Credit line
Purchased with Art Fund support and assistance from Mr Frank Fremlin
Object history
The Fremlin carpet which probably served as a table cover was made for William Fremlin, a servant of the East India Company between 1626 and 1644. and was probably made for him after 1637, when he became President of the Council at Surat. The family coat-of-arms appears both in the main field and in the border.
Subjects depicted
Summary
Mughal carpets with animal scenes in the field are not uncommon, but this one is unique because it has the coat-of-arms of the Fremlin family incorporated into the field and borders. It was commissioned by William Fremlin who served in India as an official of the East India Company from 1626-44, and who ended his career there as President of the Council of Surat. It is likely that the carpet was made towards the end of his career, probably in Lahore (today in Pakistan), which was a known centre of carpet production at the time.

The Fremlin coat of arms includes an elephant as its crest, but this does not appear to be connected with William's career in India, as the arms were first granted to the family in 1567.
Bibliographic References
  • Swallow, Deborah and John Guy eds. Arts of India: 1550-1900. text by Rosemary Crill, John Guy, Veronica Murphy, Susan Stronge and Deborah Swallow. London : V&A Publications, 1990. 240 p., ill. ISBN 1851770224, p.157, pl.132. Dan Walker. Flowers Underfoot. Indian Carpets of the Mughal Era. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1997, illustrated in black and white fig. 49, p. 56, discussed pp. 17-19, 48-57
  • Ayers, J. Oriental Art in the Victoria and Albert Museum, London 1983, ISBN 0-85667-120-7p. 82
  • Baker, Malcolm, and Brenda Richardson (eds.), A Grand Design: The Art of the Victoria and Albert Museum, London: V&A Publications, 1999.
Collection
Accession Number
IM.1-1936

About this object record

Explore the Collections contains over a million catalogue records, and over half a million images. It is a working database that includes information compiled over the life of the museum. Some of our records may contain offensive and discriminatory language, or reflect outdated ideas, practice and analysis. We are committed to addressing these issues, and to review and update our records accordingly.

You can write to us to suggest improvements to the record.

Suggest Feedback

record createdFebruary 7, 2003
Record URL