Oriental Rug lexicon: A, B, C, D, E, F, G, H, I, J, K, L, M, N, O, P, Q, R, S, T, U, V, W, X, Y, Z
Abadeh ( Abadah )
Persian rug knotted in the town. The design of Abadeh rugs is influenced by the Qashgai tribe’s rugs.
Abbas Shah ( Shah Abbas )
Abbas Shah I, shah of Persia from 1588-1629. Abbas Shah “the Great” was the 5th Safavid Shah (king) of Iran. Isfahan was the Persian capital under Shah Abbas. See Safavid carpets.
Abrash is a change or variation in the color of a rug due to differences in the wool or dye bath.
Abruzzi (Abruzzo) is a region in central Italy located between mountains in the west and the Adriatic Sea in the east. Abruzzi has in the 17th-19th centuries been a source of Italian textiles and rugs.
‘Admiral carpets’ are Spanish carpets from the 15th century with heraldic shields and coats of arms. See examples of ‘Admiral’ carpets.
Antique and semi-antique Afghan rugs are mostly made by Turkmens of the Ersari tribe. The rugs are often with large Turkmen guls in shades of red. See map of Afghanistan.
African textiles are from various locations across the African continent with different styles, techniques and decorative purposes. See examples of African textiles.
Turkic speaking tribe located in Iran near Kerman. Both nomadic people and settled in villages. Afshar rugs are squariesh with geometrical design. See also examples of Afshar soumaks and Afshar bags.
Agra is a large city and weaving district in North Central India. Agra was in former times the capital of the Mughal Empire. See examples of Agra carpets.
Town in Iran in the Heriz region. The Heriz rug design is often used in Ahar rugs.
The Berber tribes of the Ait Ouaouzguite Confederation are located around Tazenakht in the High Atlas region. See Berber rugs.
A Turkmen Ak chuval is a large storage bag with a mixed technique of flatweave and pile. See examples.
Aksaray is a city in the Central Anatolia region of Turkey and the capital district of Aksaray Province between Konya and Keyseri. See examples of Aksaray rugs and Aksaray kilims.
The Akstafa peacock motif is used in Akstafa rugs. Akstafa is a town in Azerbaijan and also the name of a river.
An Ala chuval is an Anatolian grain sack and storage bag.
Aladag is a town in Turkey about 100 km north of the city of Adana, up in the mountains. See examples of Aladag rugs.
Kilims from the surroundings of Aleppo at the time when North Syria was a part of the Ottoman Empire. See examples of Syrian kilims.
A rug weaving center in the 15-17th century Spain. See examples of Alcaraz rugs in the section for Spanish carpets.
Alpan Kuba rugs have a special design with medaillions surrounded by four hexagons.
Alpujarra rugs are woven in the town in the province of Granada from the 15th century through 19th century. See examples of Alpujarra rugs in the section for Spanish carpets.
The Amoghli workshop in Meshed was one of the most renowned workshops manufacturing Persian carpets. See examples of signed Amoghli carpets.
Amritsar rugs and carpets are produced in Amritsar in the northwest of India, near the Kashmir region.
Anatolia ( Asia Minor )
The Asiatic part of Turkey (see map). Rug weaving is a traditional ancient craft dating back to at least the 13th century. See examples of Anatolian rugs.
Angelas rugs, also often spelled Injelas rugs, are knotted in the Iranian Hamadan region.
Anatalya is located on Anatolia’s southwest coast bordered by the Taurus Mountains and is a trading center for rugs. It is located south of Dosemealthi and the rugs from Dosemealthi are some times labelled as Antalya rugs. Antalya Archaeological Museum includes an ethnographic section with Dosemealti rugs.
Antique, semi-antique and vintage
Antique means more than 100 years old and semi-antique mean between 50 – 100 years old. In some cases an “antique rug” is just more than 80 years old. An vintage rug is more than 40 years old and some dealers use this expression instead of “semi-antique” rugs. Read more about antique, semi-antique and vintage rugs and textiles.
Aqkand is a city in Meyaneh County, East Azerbaijan Province, Iran. See examples of Aqkand kilims.
Arabatchi ( Arabachi )
A Turkmen tribe. See examples of Arabatchi rugs.
Arak ( Sultanabad )
Arak is a central western Iranian town formerly known as Sultanabad. Well known rug types from the Arak province include Sultanabad, Sarouk, Mahal, Lilihan and Ferahan.
The Ardabil carpets are a pair of twins, weaved in Persia in the 16th. century. One of the carpets are exhibited in Victoria and Albert Museum in London and the other in Los Angeles County Museum of Art. The Ardabil Carpets were created in Tabriz, Kashan or Mashad and the name Ardabil used be course they were originally housed at a large shrine in the city of Ardabil. The carpets are woven in 1539-40 according to the dated inscriptions. The foundation is of silk and the pile of wool with a knot density at 300-350 knots per square inch ( 470-540.000 knots per square metres). The size of the carpets are 34 1/2 feet by 17 1/2 feet ( 10,5 metres x 5,3 metres). Read more about the Ardabil Carpets in the article about LACMA.
Ardebil ( Ardabil )
Town in Iranian Azerbaijan. Some contemporary Ardebil rug designs used in this area are influenced by Caucasian designs.
Arraiolos rugs are Portuguese needlepoint weavings manufactured in or labelled after the Portuguese town Arraiolos. See examples of Arraiolos rugs.
The Art Deco period (1908-1935) was an international design movement and Chinese Art Deco rugs were produced from the 1910’s to the 1940’s.
Asmalyk ( Osmulduk )
Five-sided Turkmen camel trapping used in a Turkmen wedding processions. Asmalyks were made in pairs to decorate the flanks of a bride’s wedding camel. See examples of asmalyks and read about a special exhibition of Turkmen Asmalyks.
Avanos is a town and district of Nevsehir Province in the Central Anatolia region of Turkey. It is located in the historic region of Cappadocia. See examples of Anavos rugs.
Caucasian Avar rugs are woven by an ethnic group Avar in Daghestan. The traditional Avar design is a hooked diamond in light red on a indigo blue field.
Avunya is the old name for the town Ezine. See examples of Avunya rugs.
English Axminster rugs are from mid of the 18th century to the first half of the 19th century hand-knotted in Axminster, Devon. Contemporary rugs are machine made with power looms.
Aubusson tapestries were woven in Aubusson, France in the 16th century and later in 1665, Aubusson was given the status of Royal Manufacture by Colbert. See examples of Aubusson tapestries.
The Anatolian Aydinli tribe’s kilims are typically weaved in two parts and sewn together. See examples of Aydinli kilims.
Azerbaijan National Carpet Museum
Azerbaijan National Carpet Museum, formerly Azerbaijan Carpet Museum, was established in 1967. It located in Baku and their collection of Azerbaijani flatwoven carpets and pile carpets includes approximately 3000 objects. Find articles about the Azerbaijan National Carpet Museum.
Turkic language spoken in Azerbaijan and Iran ( Southern Azerbaijan ). See examples of Azeri kilims.
A tribe of the Khamseh Confederacy. See Baharlu tribe rugs.
Bahmanli carpets are associated with the village Boyuk Bahmanli in Karabakh, Azerbaijan.
Bahluli is a Baluchi subtribe. See examples of Bahluli rugs.
Bakhtiari (Bakhktiari, Bakhtiary, Bakhtiar, Baktiari )
The Center of Bakhtiari weaving area is found south-east of Isfahan in Shahr-e-Kord in Iran. The formerly nomadic tribe has become settled. Sharh-e-Kord is the provincial capital of Chahar Mahal and Bakhtiari Province. See examples of Bakhtiari rugs, Bakhtiari Garden Design, and Bakhtiari kilims.
Bakshaish rugs and carpets are considered among the finest examples of larger rugs from the Heriz region in the North-Western Iran.
Baku is the capital and largest city of Azerbaijan, as well as the largest city of Caucasus. When speaking about Baku rugs they are from the area and villages around Baku in the historical Baku Khanate.
Balkan kilims and rugs are influenced by Anatolian weavings.
Baluch ( Balouch, Balouchi )
The Baluch inhabit Baluchistan, a part of Iran, Afghanistan and Pakistan. The Baluch pile rugs are usually small and in dark colours. See also examples of Baluch bags.
Bandirma (fomerly Panderma) is a town in Turkey on the southern shore of the Sea of Marmora. Bandirma rugs are often an imitating of Ghiordes prayer rugs.
The Beauvais Manufactory was a historic tapestry factory in France dating back to 1664. See examples of Beauvais tapestries.
Bellini carpets are Anatolian prayer carpets first shown in paintings by the Italian painter Gentile Bellini (1429-1507).
Berbers are an ethnic group native to North Africa, especially Morocco. See examples of Moroccan Berber rugs.
City of northwestern Turkey (Anatolia) with a long tradition for rug weaving. The design term “Bergama rug” is often used for antique western Anatolian village rugs. See also examples of Bergama kilims.
Beshir rugs are made in areas along the Amu Darya River from Bokhara in Uzbekistan into the northern Afghanistan. Beshir rugs are woven by weavers of the Ersari tribe.
Weaving fabrics in Bhutan for clothing was essential in earlier times, but Bhutan textiles are also an art.
Bibikabad rugs are knotted around the village Bibi Kabad in the Hamadan region of Iran.
Bidjov rugs or Bidjov Kuba rugs are from the southeast Caucasus in Azerbaijan.
Bijar ( Bidjar )
Persian rug and town in North West Iran. The Bijar rugs are very solid. Though the price for contemporary Bijar rugs are relative high compared with other new Iranian rugs, Bijar (Bidjar) rugs are popular among new buyers becourse of the skilled craftsmanship. See also examples of Bidjar kilims.
The design of Bird Ushak carpets from the 16th-17th centuries are a repeated pattern of four birds around a blossom. Selendi, a town west of Ushak, is known for their Bird Ushak carpets.
Birjand is the capital of the Iranian province of South Khorasan. Birjand rugs are also knowned internationally as Moud rugs (Mood rugs). Most of the rugs in the region are woven in the villages around Birjand.
The Black Church in Brasov in Romania is famous for their collection of 104 Transylvanian rugs from the 17th-18th centuries. See examples of Transylvanian rugs and articles with information about the Black Church.
Persian Borchalu rugs are from the village of Borchalu in the Iranian Hamadan region.
The boteh is an almond or teardrop-shaped motif often used in oriental rugs. See examples of Boteh rug design.
Bowlan (Bulan) is a village in in the Tehran Province, Iran. See examples of Bowlan kilims.
Although they are often mistaken for embroidery, brocaded designs are produced entirely on the loom, as the fabric is woven. Soft, lustrous pattern yarns are interlaced entirely by hand, and these pattern rows alternate with thin, plain-weave ground wefts. See examples of brocaded rugs.
Bukhara (Bokhara) is an ancient city in the Central Asian country of Uzbekistan. The attribition of rugs to Bukhara are disputed. The name “Bokhara rug” is often used to describe any contemporary rug with designs using Turkmen guls. See examples of SAF rugs attributed to Bukhara.
Burdur is a city and a province in southwestern Anatolia. See examples of Burdur kilims.
Butterfly saddle rugs
Most Tibetan saddle rugs are woven with a design so the overall impression is a butterfly with spread wings.
Cairene carpets are floral carpets from the 16th-17th centuries attributed to Cairo, Egypt.
Cal is a town in southwest Anatolia. See examples of Cal rugs.
Canakkale is a town and a district in northtwest Anatolia. Se examples of Canakkale rugs.
Cappadocia is located in the central Turkey and is known for the strange landscape formed by erosion of volcano tuff. See examples of Cappadocian rugs and fragments.
The Caucasus is the area between the Black Sea and the Caspian Sea. Caucasian rugs are primarily village rugs and normally display geometric designs in primary colours.
Chahar Mahal is a large area with ca. 50 villages between Isfahan and the Zagros-mountains. Nomads from the Luri-Bahktiari tribes used the area for their summer-camps for many centuries, probably together with a Kurdish tribe. See examples of Luri rugs and Bakhtiari rugs. Read Lars Nygaard article about a visit to the Bakhtiaries.
Caucasian Chajli rugs are often labelled Chajli Kazak or Chajli Shirvan. The Chajli design consist of three octogonal medallions.
A Chanteh is a small bag made by nomadic weavers. Read more about Chantehs.
The Chelsea Carpet is a 16th century Persian carpet in the Victoria & Albert Museum’s possession. The carpet was woven in Persia in the first half of the sixteenth century, during the reign of the Safavid dynasty. Read more about the Chelsea Carpet.
The Royal Danish Collections has several 17th centuries Persian Chenille carpets. Read more about the Chenille carpets stored at Rosenborg Castle.
The design of Chelaberd rugs are associated with the village Chalabilar in Karabagh. They are also named Sunburst Kasak or Eagle Kazak.
Chichi is a village in the Kuba region of Azerbaijan in Caucasus. See examples of Chichi rugs.
Chila rugs are from South East Caucasus, Baku region.
The carpet production in China were probably introduced between the 15th and 17th centuries and the patterns inspired from Chinese porcelain and other art. These Chinese carpets were popular in the imperial courts during this time. See a map of China.
Chinese minority textiles
Ethnic textile producing groups in China include Miao, Dong, Yi, Yao, Shui, Bouyi, Li, Gejia, Bai and other groups who produce colorful costumes. See examples of Chinese Minority Textiles.
Chodor ( Chawdor, Chowdur, Choudor, Chaudor )
A Turkmen tribe inhabiting the Khiva area of Turkestan. The field color in Chodor rugs are often a distinctive purple-brown.
Chondzoresk rugs are also named Cloudband Kazaks and are from Karabagh region, Southern Caucasus.
Chuval ( Juval, Joval )
Turkmen storage bag with pile surface. See examples of Turkmen chuvals.
Cappadocia is a historical region in Central Anatolia, largely in the Nevsehir, Kayseri, Kırsehir, Aksaray, Malatya, Sivas and Nigde provinces in Turkey. Se examples of Cappadocian rugs and Cappadocian kilims.
The Central Anatolian region is a high plateau separated by mountains from the Black Sea to the Taurus mountains and from the Mediterranean regions of the south. Central Anatolia includes Aksaray, Elmadag, Kayseri, Kirsehir, Nevsehir, Konya and Sivas. See examples of rugs labelled Central Anatolian rugs and Central Anatolian kilims.
Clark Sickle-Leaf Carpet
Sotheby’s auction ‘Important Carpets from the William A. Clark Collection’ 5 June 2013 in New York brought a world record for a carpet sold at an auction. A 17th century Kerman carpet ‘The Clark Sickle-Leaf Carpet’ sold for an exceptional price of $33.8 million.
Coptic textiles are made by Egyptian Christians (Copts) and have been found i graves from the 3th-7th centuries.
Two famous carpets are labelled the “Coronation Carpet”. The Danish Coronation Carpet owned by the Danish Royal Family and LACMA’s Coronation Carpet.
Persian, Turkish, Chinese or Mughal carpets commissioned by the rulers. See examples of Ottoman court rugs.
Carlo Crivelli is a Venetian renaissance painter. Crivelli rugs are named after him due to their depiction in his paintings.
Çumra is a small town situated south east of Konya. See examples of Cumra rugs.
Kashan Dabir carpets were made in the 20th century in the Dabir workshop in Kashan. These Dabir Kashan carpets are known for their high quality.
The term “decorative rugs” is often used for large room-sized rugs and carpets woven in workshops. They are so called commercial rugs and meant for export opposite to so called “tribal” and “collectable” rugs. Antique Heriz, Serapi, Bakshaish, Sultanabad, Tabriz and Ziegler carpets are also commercial carpets and may be called “decorative”.
Daghestan is a republic of Russia located along the shore of the Caspian Sea, in the North Caucasus. Daghestan rugs are often prayer rugs.
Damascus carpets from the 16th century, and attributed to Damascus, Syria, is connected to the rug art of the Mamluk rulers.
The David Collection in Copenhagen has one of the finest collections of Islamic art from the 8th to the 19th century in Northern Europe.
Dazkiri is a village in south, western Anatolia. See examples of Dazkiri rugs.
Demirci is a town north of Kula in the northwestern Anatolia. Demirci rugs from the town is often labelled Demirci-Kula.
Derbend, now Derbent, is a city in Daghestan, Russia, located on the Caspian Sea. See examples of Derbend rugs.
The production of Irish hand-knotted Donegal carpets began in the late 19th century, in the village of Killybegs on Donegal County, Ireland.
The DOBAG Cooperative has showroom just outside Ayvacik very close to Assos, the ancient Aeolian city above the tourist resort and beautiful fishing village of Behramkale. See examples of contemporary Dobag rugs or find articles about the DOBAG Cooperative.
Doroksh (Dorokhsh) is a town in northeast Iran north of Birjand. See examples of Doroksh rugs.
Dosemealthi (Dösemealti) is a town just north of Antalya. See examples of Dösemealti rugs.
Dragon carpets include motifs of stylized dragons giving the name Dragon Carpets to this type of rugs produced in south Caucasus.
East Anatolian rugs
Rugs labelled East Anatolian rugs are most often made by Kurdish weavers in these eastern areas of Turkey. See also examples of East Anatolian kilims.
The historical East Turkestan is a part of the Xinjiang Region of China. Khotan and Kashgar are oase cities in Xinjiang and Khotan is the source of most rugs labelled East Turkestan rugs.
Ancient Egyptian carpets include Cairene carpets and Mamluk carpets.
The Emperor’s Carpet at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, a 16th century Persian carpet from the Safavid court ateliers, has a twin at Museum of Applied Arts in Vienna.
Ensi ( Engsi )
Turkmen pile rug and door curtain. Se examples of Turkmen ensis.
Erivan (now Yerevan) is the capital of Armenia. Erivan rugs were made in the Erivan district by Armenian weavers.
Ersari ( Ersary )
A group of Turkmen tribes of northern Afghanistan and Turkmenistan. Ersari rugs and weavings include a large design repertoire.
Erzurum is a city in eastern Anatolia. See examples of Erserum kilims.
Ezine is a town south of Canakkale in Anatolia. It was formerly named Avunya. See examples of Ezine rugs.
The Farjam Collection, Dubai, displays a rotating series of exhibitions drawn from The Farjam Collection. The Islamic section includes ancient textiles and fine carpets.
Felt rugs are made of matted wool which becomes felt because of moisture, heat and pressure. Nomads in Persia, Anatolia, Central Asia and East Turkestan have lived in tents made of felt. See examples of Felt rugs.
Fereghan rugs from the 19th century are finely woven and from the area north of Arak City. They are also often called Fereghan Sarouks.
Fars is a province in southwest Iran known for its rich Persian culture. The provincial capital is Shiraz, a marketplace for Qashqai, Khamseh and Luri rugs from Fars.
Ferdows is located in the Province of South Khorasan in Iran. The rugs from the areas around Ferdows is often made by Baluchis. See examples of Ferdows rugs.
Figdor Garden Carpet
Museum für angewandte Kunst (MAK) in Vienna has several classic Safavid carpets in their permanent carpet collection and among them the Figdor Garden Carpet, a Kerman carpet from the first half of the 17th century.
Anatolian Filikli rugs are shaggy rugs made of unspun long curly hair from Angora goats.
Flamskäv is a Swedish tapestry woven in flamskäv technique. See examples of Flamskäv weavings.
Textile woven without pile. Kilims, Soumaks, Suzanis and Cicims are flatweaves. See examples of Anatolian kilims and Caucasian soumaks.
Fustat (old Cairo) was the first capital of Egypt under Muslim rule. Excavations here have found ancient rug and textile “Fustat fragments“.
Gabbeh ( Gabeh )
Originally Persian tribal rug. Gabbeh rugs are coarse and woven for domestic use. Designs are simple geometric patterns or figures.
Garahgozloo is a kurdish tribe in the north western part of the Hamadan region. See examples of Garahgozloo rugs.
The classical Persian Garden Design is especially connected to Bakhtiari garden design rugs.
Gelveri is a town in the Aksaray Province and Central Anatolia region of Turkey. Se examples of Gelveri rugs.
Gendje (Ganja) is the second lagest city in Azerbaijan. Gendje is located between the weavings areas of Karabagh, Kazak and Shirvan and has also been a collection point for rugs from surrounding areas. See examples of Gendje rugs.
A germesh is Turkmen weaving hanging beneath the ensi to avoid dust in the tent. See examples of Turkmen germesh. See examples of Ersari germech.
The Gerus design used in Gerus Bijar rugs (Gerrus, Garrus) Bijar rugs is a garden motif with overlaid arabesque vinary in red.
Domenico Ghirlandaio, also spelled Ghirlandajo, was an Italian Renaissance painter born in Florence. His paintings showed rugs with medallions used in Bergama Ghirlandaio rugs.
Ghiordes (Gördes) is a town in western Anatolia known for prayer rugs. This educational gallery includes Ghiordes prayer rugs from the 16th-19th centuries. Prayer rugs from Ghiordes have been an inspiration for weavers in other parts of Anatolia who have copied the design.
Golpayegan is a town between Isfahan and Arak. Contemporary rugs from the town are often with a single medallion. See examples of Golpayegan rugs.
The Gobelins were a family of dyers who, in the middle of the 15th century, established a factory in Paris. To the dye-works there was added a manufactory of Gobelins tapestry in the 16th century.
Göklen is a Turkmen tribe living in North East Iran. See examples of Göklen rugs.
Goltug rugs are made in Zanjan in the North Western part of Iran. They have a solid grib like a real Bidjar and contemporary rugs are often sold as Goltug Bidjars. See examples of Golrug rugs.
Gorevan is a town near Heriz. A Gorevan rug is often a lower grade Heriz rug and more coarsely woven.
Grass: A Nation’s Battle for Life
The documentary film ‘Grass: A Nation’s Battle for Life’ follows a branch of the Bakhtiari tribe in Iran as they migrate on their seasonal journey to pastures.
Hadji Habibian is called the father of Nain carpets. His family still make fine, clear and bright Nain Habibian carpets.
Hajji Baba Club
The Hajji Baba Club is the oldest rug club in United States devoted to the study of oriental carpets and antique textiles. Hajji Baba Club was founded in New York City in 1932.
Hamadan (in ancient time Ecbatana) is the capital city of Hamadan Province of Iran. Hamedan is believed to be among the oldest Iranian cities. The city is the center for trading with rugs that are made in the hundreds of villages nearby. Some of these Hamadan rugs are sold under their own names such as Nahavand, Tuiserkan, Malayer or Hosseinabad.
The Harshang pattern and motif is found in both Persian and Caucasian rugs. It is also called the crab design.
Herat was formerly a important city and center for carpets in Persia. Now it is a city in Afghanistan. Some 16-17th century Persian carpets, and among them, The Emperor’s Carpet, have been attributed to Herat but that is disputed.
Herati ( Mahi )
Herati design is a very common repeated field design with a flower in a diamond with curving leaves located outside the diamond and parallel to each side. Herati design is also called “fish pattern” because the leaves look like a fish.
Hereke is a former small fisherman’s village near Istanbul and genuine Hereke Carpets and rugs are knotted in this small town. Sultan Abdulmejid I established the Royal Court Manufacture in Hereke in 1843. After the end of the Ottoman Empire in 1923 the Royal Court Manufacture in Hereke was closed and the carpet production came almost to an end. Around 1950 some families in Hereke started once again to produce Hereke silk rugs. See examples of Hereke Palace carpets and Hereke silk rugs.
Heriz Rugs are made in the Heriz district about 40 miles west of Tabriz in Northwest Iran. The Heriz rugs reflect a geometric rendering of Tabriz designs. Heriz is the market center collection point for the region in Iran in-between Tabriz and Ardabil. Heriz is one of the more important production areas for the US market. The wool is excellent and the construction is sound making hard-wearing durable carpets. Next to Bijars these are some of the toughest Persian carpets.
High Atlas is a mountain range in Morocco and Berber tribes are weaving rugs in the area. Read about the exhibition ‘Berber rugs from the High Atlas‘.
Holbein rugs are taking their name from Hans Holbein the Younger, due to their depiction in European Renaissance paintings.
Hosseinabad is an village in the Hamadan region located south of Hamadan City. See examples of Hosseinabad rugs.
Hotamis is a town east of Konya and south of Karapinar in Central Anatolia. See examples of Hotamis kilims.
Hunting carpets are carpets from the Safavid period showing hunting scenes. See examples of Savafid hunting carpets.
ICOC International Conference on Oriental Carpets
An organization holding international conferences about oriental rugs and textiles with lectures, exhibitions and dealer’s fair. Read more about ICOC.
Igdir (Igdyr) rugs from Turkmenistan are often thought as a sub-group of Yomud rugs but it is debated. See exemples of Igdir rugs.
Carpet weaving in India can be traced to the beginning of the Mughal Dynasty in the early sixteenth century where Indian craftsmen adopted Persian techniques and designs. See examles of Agra carpets, Amritsar carpets and Mughal carpets.
Inner Mongolia is a region of northern China and borders Mongolia and Russia. Baotou in Inner Mongolia was the main trading place for Inner Mongolian rugs from the surrounding towns.
Iran Carpet Museum
The Carpet Museum of Iran exhibits Persian carpets from all over Iran, dating back in time to the present.
Isfahan ( Esfahan, Isphahan, Esphahan )
A city in western central Iran. The carpets from Isfahan have been famous since the 17th. century.
Isiklar is a village in the Konya region. See examples of Isiklar rugs.
Isparta (Sparta) is a city in western Turkey. See examples of Isparta rugs and Isparta kilims.
Jaff is a large Kurdish tribe or clan, living in the borderlands of Iran and Iraq. See examples of Jaff Kurd rugs.
The most well-known Jewish rugs are Bezalel rugs and Marbediah (Marvadiah) rugs made by Jewish weavers in the first quarter of the 20th century in Jerusalem. The Marbediah workshop was affiliated with the Bezalel Academy of Arts and Design in Jerusalem and carpets from this workshop were either labelled Bezalel or Marbediah.
Joshegan is a town in the northern central Iran southwest of Kashan. The design is an all-over ‘diamond’ pattern and Joshegan rugs are easy to identify.
Jozan ( Josan, Djozan, Djosan )
Persian rug and village in the Malayer area. Jozan rugs are quality rugs of Sarouk type. Often called Jozan Sarouk or Malayer Sarouk.
Julkhyr rugs are long coarse rugs with long pile made in Uzbekistan as sleeping rugs. They are often sewn together in two pieces. See examples of Uzbek Julkhyr rugs.
Kagizman (Kağızman) is a town and district of Kars Province in the Eastern Anatolia. See examples of Kagizman rugs.
Kaitag textiles are embroidered textiles from southeast Daghestan. See examples of Kaitag embroideries.
Kangxi era carpets are from the period 1654-1722 where the Kangxi Emperor ruled.
Kansu (Gansu) is a province of western China. Kansu rugs were woven in the weaving center of Ningxia and in many smaller towns.
A Turkmen Kapanuk is a decoration hanging down the sides of a tent door.
Karabakh is a geographic region, extending from the highlands of the Lesser Caucasus down to the lowlands between the rivers Kura and Aras. Karabagh rugs are known for their quality. Designs and colors are related to other Caucasian rugs with tribal geometric and large medallions.
Karachov Kazaks are one of the Kazak rug substyles. Karachov rugs (Karachoph rugs) are made south of Tbilisi.
Turkmen Karadashli rugs are often thought as a sub-group of Yomud rugs but it is debated. See exemples of Karadashli rugs.
Karagashli rugs are made in Northeast Caucasus in the Kuba area.
Karaja (Karadja) is an Iranian town located in the northwestern part of Iran. See examples of Karaja rugs.
The Karakalpaks are a Turkic ethnic group living i Northwestern Uzbekistan in the Amu Darya Delta (Oxus). See examples of Karakalpak rugs.
Karakeceli (Karakeçili) is a town in the Central Anatolia region. See examples of Karakeceli rugs.
Karaman is a city in south Central Anatolia, north of the Taurus Mountains 100 km south of Konya. See examples of Karaman rugs.
Karapınar is a town in the Konya Province in Central Anatolia. See examples of Karapinar rugs and Karapinar kilims.
Kars is a city in northeastern Turkey, near the Armenian border. See examples of Kars rugs.
Kashan is a city in the north central Iran. During the Safavid period Kashan was famous for great court carpets. See examples of Kashan carpets.
A Kashan souf is a Kashan rug with a flatweave ground and pile decoration. See examples of Kashan souf rugs.
Kashgar is an oasis city in southern Xinjiang and located in the historical East Turkestan. See examples of Kashgar rugs.
The Kashkuli is one of the tribes in the Qashqai confederation in southwest Persia. See examples of Kashkuli rugs.
Kasim Ushag rugs are made in the Karabagh region. It is debated if Kasim Ushag rugs are made by Armenian or Kurdish weavers.
Kashmar is a city the Khorasan Province, Iran. It is located southwest of Mashad and southeast of Sabzevar. See examples of Kashmar rugs.
Kasvin (Qazvin, Gazvin) is a city in northern Iran. Persian Kasvin rugs (Kazvin rugs, Gazvin rugs) are often medallion rugs. See examples of of Gazvin kilims.
Kazak rugs are made in South and South West Caucasus. There are several substyles of Kazaks rugs including Bordjalou Kazak, Fachralo Kazak, Karachov Kazak, Pinwheel Kazak, Sewan Kazak, Shikli Kazak, Shulaver Kazak and Star Kazak.
Kelardasht is a town and a valley in the Mazandaran Province in the mountains north of Tehran. See examples of Kelardasht rugs.
Kerman is a city in southeast Iran. Persian Kerman carpets (Kirman) from the 17th century include the famous Kerman ‘Vase’ carpets and this educational photo-gallery includes several fragments of these carpets. More recent antique Kerman carpets include medallon designs, pictorial carpets and other designs.
Kermanshah is a city and region in the western part of Iran. See examples of Kermanshah rugs.
Kayseri is a large city in Central Anatolia, Turkey. Kayseri is a large city in Central Anatolia, Turkey. Most Keyseri rugs on the market are silk rugs.
Kelleh ( kelley )
Persian rug size, a long rug with a lenght at least the double of the width.
Persian rug size, a runner.
The Khalaj are classified as a Turkic tribe in Iran. See examples of Khalaj kilims.
Khal Mohammadi ( Khal Mohamadi )
Khal Mohammadi is the trade name for new Afghan-Turkmen quality rugs produced by Khal Mohammad. He is based in North Mazar-i-Sheriff and has a store there as well as in Kabul and Peshawar Pakistan.
Khamseh rugs are woven by several tribes in the Khamseh Confederacy inhabiting the Fars province in the souhtwestern part of Iran. See examples of Khamseh rugs, Khamseh bags and Khamseh kilims.
A Turkmen Khalyk is a camel trapping and used for for bridal processions. Most Khalyks are Tekke Khalyks.
Kermanshah (Kirmanshah) is a city and region in the western part of Iran. See examples of Persian Kermanshah rugs.
Khila is a weaving center near Baku. See examples of Khila rugs.
Khorassan is a province of northeast Persia. Khorassan has been famous for fine rugs and carpets going back in time. See examples of 17th century Khorassan carpets.
Khotan is an oase city of Eastern Turkestan ( Xinjiang ) in China. Khotan is thought to be the source of most East Turkestan medaillion rugs. See exmaples of Khotan rugs.
Khoy is a city and a county in West Azerbaijan Province, Iran. See examples of Khoy rugs.
Kirsehir (Kirshehir) is located between Ankara and Keyseri in Central Anatolia. See examples of Kirsehir rugs.
Kilim ( Kelim )
Slit tapestry is the technique used most frequently for the flatwoven rugs and hangings called kilims. Slit tapestry is also used for bags, pictorial tapestries, and other articles. The fabrics are usually weft-faced, meaning that the warp is covered completely; the surface is ribbed in a vertical direction. Warp yarns are those that were affixed to the loom; weft yarns are those that were interlaced with the warps. See examples of Anatolian kilims and Persian kilims.
The Turkmen tribe Kizil Ayak is often seen as a sub-group of Ersari. See examples of Kizil Ayak rugs.
The asymmetrical knot Persian or Senneh knot is excellent for fine designs, because they are closely packed. They dominate in Persian, Central Asian, Indian, and Chinese rugs. Symmetrical knots are more secure and better for coarser weaves and is typical in Turkish and Caucasian rugs, but they also appear in many Persian village rugs. Symmetrical knots are also called Turkish or Ghiordes knots. Read more about Turkish and Persian knots.
Knotted structures are used for the wide range of plush pile carpets popularly known as Oriental rugs. But tribal weavers have also knotted tent bags and saddlebags, saddle covers, animal trappings, cushions, door hangings, tent girths and other articles. Sometimes knotted pile has been combined with one or more of the flatweaves. Genuine hand-knotted oriental pile rugs are made with pile of wool or silk and on a foundation of either cotton, wool or silk.
Kolyai rugs are Kurdish nomadic or village rugs from the Kermanshah province in Western Iran.
Konagkend (Konagend) is a village in the Kuba district. See examples of Konagkend rugs.
Konya is the most important city south of Ankara in the Central Anatolia region. It is a pilgrimage destination for Sufis, focused on the founder of the Mevlana order, Jelaleddin Rumi. Konya rugs are also one the most important rugs of the Central Anatolia. Many of the rugs labelled Konya rugs are from the surrounding areas. Read more about Konya rugs and museums. See examples of Konya kilims.
Fine soft wool from the belly of a sheep.
Kozak rugs are made in the northwestern part of Anatolia. See examples of Kozak rugs.
Kuba rugs were woven in the the surroundings of Kuba in villages around the towns of Perepedil, Divichi, Konaghend and Karagashli.
Kula is a town in the Aegean region of western Anatolia. Kula is located south of Demirci. See examples of Kula prayer rugs from the 18th-19th century.
Kum Kapi (Kumkapı) is a quarter in Fatih district of Istanbul. Kum Kapi was a center for the Armenian community and famous for the Armenian weavers Kum Kapi silk and metallic thread rugs.
Kurdish Rugs are rugs woven by Kurds. Kurdish groups populate the eastern part of Turkey, northern Iraq, western Persia and areas near Persia’s eastern borders. Many rugs labelled Kurdish rugs are from the eastern part of Anatolia.
The Kyrgyz (Kirgiz, Khirgiz) inhabits primarily Kyrgyzstan but are also found in other parts of Central Asia. See examples of Kyrgyz rugs.
Several towns in Anatolia are named Ladik. The town famous for rug weaving is located in Central Anatolia northwest of Konya. See examples of Ladik prayer rugs from the 17th-19th centuries.
Lakai is a Central Asian Uzbek tribe. Lakai embroideries are very colorful and often small wall hangings.
Lambalo is a Kazak rug design. Like Talish rugs Lambalo rugs have several borders.
Lavar Kerman rugs or Raver Kerman rugs are produced in a town north of Kerman. The name Lavar is often used for finer Kerman carpets.
Lenkoran (Lankeran) is a city in Azerbaijan, on the coast of the Caspian Sea, near the southern border to Iran. The Lenkoran medaillion is derived from a dragon motif. See examples of Lenkoran rugs.
The Lesghis or the Lesghians are a name for a number of tribes of the northeast Caucasus. The Lesghi Star design is mostly connected to rugs from northeast Caucasus. See examples of Lesghi rugs.
Lilihan ( Lillihan )
Town in Iran south of Arak (Sultanabad). Lillihan rugs from the town are similar in design to Sarouks.
Lion rugs is a group of southwestern Persian rugs with a lion as the motif. Most of these existing rugs are Gabbeh Lion rugs from the 19th-20th centuries.
Contemporary south Persian Gabbeh or Loribaft are popular among modern buyers of Iranian rugs in the 21st century.
Pambak is a village in the Lori region of Armenia. The Lori Pambak rugs motif is a large octogonal medaillion.
Los Angeles County Museum of Art
Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) has a collection of carpets which includes two of the world’s most renowned 16th century Persian carpets. The Ardabil Carpet, a twin of the Ardabil Carpet at V&A and LACMA’s Coronation carpet, a twin to the Bode Animal Carpet.
Lotto rugs and carpets were produced primarily during the 16th and 17th centuries along the Aegean coast of Anatolia. The name “Lotto rug” refers to depictions with this pattern in paintings by the 16th-century Venetian painter Lorenzo Lotto. See examples of Lotto rugs from the 16th-17th century.
The Islamic Art Galleries at Louvre in Paris holds an important collection of Mamluk and Safavid period carpets.
Luri is a Southwestern Iranian language spoken by the Lur people. Luri rugs, Luri bags and Luri kilims are woven in the Zagros Mountains in southwestern Persia.
A mafrash is a bedding bag, a “box”, from Caucasus, Persia and Eastern Turkey, most often woven in soumak or kilim technique. Mafresh is also connected to Turkmen pile bag faces primarely from the Yomut tribe and these mafrashs bags seems to be more flat. See examples of Mafrash weavings.
Mahal rugs are produced in the area around the city of Arak (Sultanabad). Most Mahal rugs have bold and floral designs.
MAK Museum für angewandte Kunst
MAK – the Austrian Museum of Applied Arts in Vienna has an very important collection of 15-17th century Anatolian carpets, Persian carpets and Egyptian Mamluk carpets. The collection includes approximately 200 carpets. Read more about Vienna’s famous carpet collection at MAK.
Makden is the Tibetan word for an under Tibetan saddle rug.
Malatya is a town in Central-Eastern Anatolia and center for collecting rugs and kilims from the area. See examples of Malatya rugs and Malatya kilims.
Malayer ( Malayir )
Town south of Hamadan. The rugs from Malayer and the villages around are single wefted like Hamadans. They are popular among collectors be course of their originality. There seems to be a floating transition in designs between rugs sold as Hamadan rugs – Malayer rugs – Jozan rugs.
Cairo, Egypt, is considered to be the origin of Mamluk carpet weaving in the last quarter of the fifteenth century, and production continued until the mid-sixteenth century. Dispite that disputes regarding the stylistic origins of these carpets continue.
Marasali rugs are attributed to a village the Shirvan region of the Caucasus. Especially prayer rugs with botehs are attributed to the village. See examples of Marasali rugs.
The Marbediah (Marvadiah) workshop was affiliated with the Bezalel Academy of Arts and Design in Jerusalem and carpets from this workshop were either labelled Bezalel rug or Marbediah rug.
The “Marby Rug“, a 14th-15th century Anatolian rug, was found in the Church of Marby in 1925 and is now a part of Swedish National Historical Museum’s collection.
Mazandaran kilims from the northern part of Iran was unknown in western carpet trade until 2002 where Parviz Tanavoli published his book “Persian flatweaves“. In older times these kilims were used as comfortable coverings and as wall hangings keeping the houses warm in the cold mountainous area.
Mazlaghan is a village located in the Hamadan Province of western Iran. Mazlaghan rugs have a design with a large medallion with quartered medallion corners.
A Medallian Ushak has a large cirkular medaillion with pendants often seen in 16-18th century Ushak rugs.
Megri (Makri), now Fethiye, is a city in the Mugla Province in the Aegean Region. See examples of Megri rugs.
Melas (Milas) is an ancient city in the Muğla Province in southwestern Anatolia. Melas has been a collecting point for Melas rugs produced in the surrounding villages.
Memling rugs with Memling guls are named after Hans Memling, who painted several examples in the last quarter of the fifteenth century. This kind of gul can be found in Anatolian, Caucasian, Shasavan and Central Asian rugs. See examples of Memling rugs.
Merino is a breed of sheep and the wool is very fine. Australian Merino wool is used Manchester Kashan carpets.
Meshed (Mashad) is located in the east of Iran, in the province of Khorasan. Meshed is both a center for rug production and also a collection point for rugs from the surrounding areas. See eaxmples of Meshed rugs.
Meshkin (Meshgin) is a town in the Zanjan Province of northwestern Iran. The designs of Meshkin rugs are often much similar to Causcasian rugs.
Metropolitan Museum of Art
The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City has one of the most famous collections of Islamic art in the world. The MET reopened their Islamic Art galleries in November 2011 after 5 years renovation.
Meymeh is a town 15 km south of Joshegan. The design of Meymeh rugs is quite similar to Joshegan rugs.
Taghi Miri and his sons began a production of high quality Persian rugs in the Shiraz area around the 1990’s. Read the article about Miri Creation rugs.
Moshkabad is probably a trade label for certain Iranian rugs, perhaps a lower grade of rugs from the Arak region. See examples of Moshkabad rugs.
Mianeh is a city and county in East Azerbaijan Province, Iran. See examples of Mianeh rugs and Mianeh kilims.
Millefleurs (French “thousand flowers”) refers to a background style of many different small flowers. The style is found in Mughal rugs and Persian rugs.
The Mina Khani motif is composed of four round blossoms in the shape of a diamond and connceted to each other. It is repeated in a overall pattern. There are many types used in Persian, Balouch and Turkmen rugs. The design is especially used in Persian Veramin rugs.
The Ming dynasty was the ruling dynasty of China from 1368 to 1644. See examples of Ming carpet fragments.
Moghan is a plain in southeast Caucasus bordering Iran. Moghan rugs are produced in the Caucasus and in the Transcaucasian region just above Iran.
The so-called ‘Manastir’ or ‘Monastir’ group of rugs, seems to be a fusion of Anatolian and Balkan design features. See examples of Monastir rugs.
Traditionally, Moroccan rugs have been woven for their domestic purposes rather than for decorative purposes. Moroccan rugs may be thick with a heavy pile, making them useful for the snow-capped Atlas mountains.
Mosul rugs is a trade name for certain Iranian Kurdish rugs.
Moud (Mud) is a town near Birjand and a major contemporary weaving center in the province of Khorrassan. See examples of Moud rugs.
Mughal carpets have been made in the area around Agra in the 16th and 17th centuries.
Mucur (Mudjur) is a town in the Kirshehir Province in the Central Anatolia. See examples of Mucur prayer rugs.
Museum of Applied Arts, Budapest
The Museum of Applied Arts in Budapest has an interesting collection of antiques and Ottoman Turkish carpets.
Museum of Islamic Art, Berlin
The Museum of Islamic Art in Berlin (Museum für Islamische Kunst) has an impressing collection of ancient Anatolian, Persian, Mughal and Cairene carpets.
Nahavand rugs are woven in the Hamadan region of northwestern Iran. Nahavand is a town south of Hamadan and west of Malayer.
Nain (Naein) is a city in Central Iran located east of Isfahan. Nain carpets are very densely knotted carpets. Nain rug production is relative new here and began in the 20th. century.
Najafabad rugs are from Najafabad, located in central Iran near the city of Isfahan.
A Namakdan is a tribal salt bag for carrying and storing salt.
A Napramach is an ancient suitcase and chest invented by tribal nomads in Central Asia. Napramachs were produced in both pile and non-pile weaving. Read the article about the Napramach.
The most famous maker of Chinese Art Deco rugs was the American Walter Nichols. Walter Nichols started his production of Nichols Chinese Rugs in 1924 in the port city of Tientsin in Northern China.
Nickle Arts Museum
The Nickle Arts Museum (Nickle Galleries) in Calgary, Canada, has an interesting collection of knotted pile carpets from West and Central Asia.
Nigde is a town in the south central Anatolia. The town is a collection point for rugs and kilims from the surrounding areas. See examples of Nigde rugs and Nigde kilims.
Ningxia ( Ningsia, Ninghsia )
Ningxia (Ninghsia) is a city of Kansu Province in western China. Ningxia was also the major center for rug weaving in Kansu Province in the 18th-19th centuries. See examples of Ningxia rugs.
Niriz (Neyriz) is a city and county of the Fars Province in southwest Iran. The rugs from Niriz are woven in Qashqai designs.
Northwest Persian rugs
The label Northwest Persian rugs refers to rugs from countless weaving villages in the Northwest Iran.
Nurata is a town in Uzbekistan. See examples of Nurata suzanis.
Obruk is located in the centre of the Central Anatolian steppes, 65 km northeast of the city of Konya. See examples of Obruk kilims.
A Turkmen ok-bash is a bag for covering tent struts and these decorative bags were always made in pairs.
Oltenia is a historical province and geographical region of Romania. It is a source of fine Oltenian kilims.
A genuine Oriental rug (carpet) is a hand-knotted or hand-woven rug made in one of the original rug producing countries. Some call a rug larger than 8 by 10 feet for a carpet.
A Turkish Empire, founded by Osman, from 1281 to 1924. Ottoman court carpets, produced under the earlier Ottoman sultans of Turkey, are extremely fine carpets with wool pile on a foundation of silk or wool. Ottoman floral carpets in the 16th-17th centuries were woven in Cairo. See Cairene carpets.
Present days handmade rugs from Pakistan are often knotted by Afghan refugees and carpet production is an important export product. The Bokhara design is often seen in contemporary Pakistani rugs.
Pao Tao rugs (Baotou) are from North East China, Inner Mongolia.
Panderma (now Bandirma) is town in Turkey on the southern shore of the Sea of Marmora. See examples of Panderma rugs.
Pazyryk Carpet ( Pazaryk Carpet )
Pile carpet found at Pazaryk in Siberia. Dated to 500 B.C. See images of the Pazyryk carpet at the State Hermitage Museum in St. Petersburg.
Rug weaving in Peking (Beijing) are considered to begin in middle of the 19th century with a peek between 1880-1920. See examples of Peking rugs.
Caucasian Perepedil rugs (Perpedil, Pirabadil) have a rams horn design in the main field, often repeated throughout. Pirabadil is a town southeast of Kuba in Daghestan.
Persia ( Iran )
Iran is often called Persia in historical and cultural contexts. And in rug trade the term “Persian rug” is far more used than the term “Iranian rug”. Iran is located in the Middle East and has borders to Afghanistan, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Iraq, Pakistan, Turkey and Turkmenistan. See Iran map. See also examples of Persian bags and saddle rugs and Persian kilims and soumaks.
PETAG (Persische Teppiche Aktien Gesellschaft) was a German initiative and a large workshop was opened in Tabriz in the early 20th century. See examples of Petag Tabriz.
Robert Pinner was founder of ICOC – International Conference on Oriental Carpets, co-founder of Hali and collector, author and rug scholar, especially on Turkmen rugs. The Lesley and Robert Pinner Collection of Turkmen rugs was sold at Rippon Boswell 15 May 2004. Find rug books by Robert Pinner.
Pinwheel Kazaks are one of the Kazak rug substyles and a repeated pinwheel is used in the design.
Chinese pillar rugs are designed to be wrapped around a pillar.
Despite the name Polonaise carpets were made in Isfahan (or perhaps Kashan) in the late 16th and 17th centuries on the order of Polish nobilities and aristocrats.
Portugal er known for their 16th-18th century needlepoint rugs and carpets. See examples of Portuguese carpets.
The so-called “Portuguese carpets” from the 17th century, and attributed to Persia or India, have motifs depicting Portuguese ships with European crew.
A prayer rug is most often a pile carpet, used in Islam and placed between the ground and the worshipper for cleanliness during the Islamic prayer. Prayer rugs have a prayer niche, a mihrab, at the end of the carpet and this mihrab must point toward Mecca while in use. See examples of prayer rugs and read more in the article “The prayer rug – a unity of symbol and ritual“.
Pre-Columbian textiles are from the time in Mexico and Central America and the Andean region of western South America prior to Spanish exploration and conquest in the 16th century. See examples of pre-Columbian textiles.
The Qashqai’s are tribes people from the Fars Province in southwest Persia in a confederation of different tribes. See examples of Qashqai rugs , Qashqai bags and Qashqai kilims.
Qum ( Qom, Kom )
A holy city in Iran. The carpet production in Qum has not a long tradition and began in the 20th century. See examples of Qum silk rugs.
Rah Rah kilims
Trade name in Turkish rug shops for a special Afshar soumak. Read more about “Rah Rah kilims” in the article.
Reed screens are tent interior made by the Kyrgyz and other Central Asian ethnic groups. Colered yarn are wrapped around the reed to create the pattern.
Reyhanli is a town and district of Hatay Province, on the Mediterranean coast of Anatolia. See examples of Reyhanli kilims.
Robert Pinner Collection
Robert Pinner was co-founder of Hali Pubblications co-founder of the International Conference of Oriental Carpets. The Robert Pinner Collection of Turkmen rugs was sold by Rippon Boswell in 2004.
Romania is especially known as a rug country because of their folk kilims. Oltenian kilims, Muntenia kilims, Moldavian kilims and Bessarabian kilims.
Rya rugs are coarsely knotted Finnish long pile rugs. See examples of Rya rugs.
Rölakan is a special Swedish tapestry weave and used for bedcovers and cushions.
Sabzevar is located ca. 150 km west of Mashad in the northeastern Iran. The rug production in Sabzevar boomed around 1980 but decreased after a short period. See examples of Sabzevar rugs.
Saddle rugs are placed over or under the saddle. Horse covers are placed under the saddle.
The climax of Persian carpet design and manufacture was achieved under the Safavid dynasty as a result of the inluence of court designers at all levels of artistic carpet production. The Safavid dynasties of Persia ruled from 1501 to 1722. See examples of Safavid period carpets.
A Saf (Saff) is a multi-niche prayer rug. The design can be found in both pile carpets and flatwoven carpets. See examples af Saf prayer rugs.
Saliani is a town in the Shirvan region south of Baku and Shirvan. Saliani rugs have often a long format.
The Salor tribe are considered as the oldest Turkoman tribe in historical Turkestan. See examples of Salor rugs.
A “Salting carpet” belongs to a group of Persian carpets from the 16th century. They are named after “The Salting Carpet” at Victoria and Albert Museum and have a similar design.
Samarkand is a ancient city in Uzbekistan on the Silk Road, the ancient trade route from China to the Mediterranean. Samarkand was a market for rugs bout not a weaving center. See rugs labelled Samarkand rugs.
Sanguszko carpets is a group of 16th-17th centuries Safavid Kerman carpets named after the Polish prince Roman Sanguszko.
Sarab rugs are from the town Sarab in the province of Azerbaijain in northwestern Persia. The rugs from Sarab are special because of the long rug and runner format.
Sarabend rugs are from the Sarabend district and area southwest of Arak. Sarabend is best known for their runners.
Sarkisla is a town in the Eastern Central Anatolian Sivas Province. See examples of Sarkisla rugs.
Sarouk is a village north of Arak in Persia. Sarouk is also a trade name for rugs in the Arak area and sourrounding villages and towns. See examples of Sarouk rugs.
Saryk is a Turkoman tribe of southern Turkestan. See examples of Saryk rugs.
Sauj Bulag rugs are Kurdish rugs made in North West Persia in the town Mahabad or surrounding areas.
Seichur rugs are a subtype of Turkmen Kuba rugs. Seychour (Zeychour) rugs are made in the Northeast Caucasus.
Semnan is the capital city of Semnan Province, located in north central Iran. Rugs from Semnan have often all-over-patters.
Senneh or Sanandej is a city and county in Kurdistan Province in Iran. The Kurds in Senneh, mostly from the Gurani tribe, are famous for their very fine knotted rugs and kilims. See examples of Senneh rugs and Senneh kilims.
Seirafian Isfahan carpets are made in Isfahan by a family of master weavers Seirafian.
The Seljuks ruled Central Asia and the Middle East from the 11th to 12-13th centuries. Only a few Seljuk carpets and fragments from the Anatolian Seljuk period have survived.
Serapi carpets or Serapi rugs are trade names for finer rugs from the Heriz area of northwestern Iran.
The Shahsavan (Shahsevan) are a nomadic pastoralist tribe located in northwest Iran and in the southern part of Azerbaijan. They migrate between their winter quarters in the Mughan steppe and their summer quarters around Mount Sabalan in the Ardebil province. Now many Shahsavan are settled. See examples of Shahsavan rugs and bags.
Shekarlu rugs are made by tribespeople from the Shekarlu tribe of the Qashqai Confederacy. See examples of Shekarlu rugs.
Shiraz is the capital of Fars Province in Iran. Shiraz is a collecting point and major market for rugs. The label Shiraz rug is used for rugs from all over Fars.
Shirvan is a city and a region in Azerbaijan, in the southeastern Caucasus. Shirvan rugs are often made in prayer rug designs.
Sivas is a city in north central Anatolia. See examples of Sivas rugs and Sivas kilims.
Slit tapestry is the technique used most frequently for the flatwoven rugs and hangings called kilims. See examples of Anatolian kilims and Persian kilims. Slit tapestry is also used for bags, pictorial tapestries, and other articles.
Smyrna (now Izmir) was a collection center for carpets to be exported to the west. See examples of Smyrna rugs.
A Sofreh (Soffreh) is a flatwoven blanket, sometimes with embroidery, and a table cloth.
Soumak ( Soumac, Sumak, Sumac )
Intricate patterning can be done by wrapping colored yarns around the warps–usually single warps or pairs. Most commonly, rows of this pattern-yarn wrapping alternate with thin, plain-weave ground wefts. Exquisite Soumak examples come from the Caucasus, from northwestern Iran, and from a few other areas. See examples of Caucasian Dragon soumaks.
The Muslims rulers, the Moors, left Spain in the late 15th century and the carpet designs turned to a more European style. See examples of Spanish carpets.
Star Ushaks are woven in the late 15 century to the early 17th century and have a pattern of large eight-pointed blue or dark blue stars.
State Hermitage Museum
The State Hermitage Museum in St. Petersburg is one of the largest art museums in the world and among their holdings is the Pazyryk carpet.
The city and the province Sultanabad (now Arak) in Iran were a major center for rug production in Iran in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. See examples of Sultanabad rugs.
Suzani is an embroidered and decorative tribal textile made in Uzekistan or other Central Asian countries. See examples of Suzani textiles.
Aleppo in Syria near the border to Turkey are known for Syrian Aleppo kilims.
Tabriz is the capital city of East Azerbaijan Province, in northwestern Iran. Mid 19th century Tabriz rugs were often woven in court designs.
Tafresh is a city between Hamadan and Qum in northwestern Iran. Rugs from Tafresh are single wefted like Hamadan rugs.
Taimani (Tiamani) is a tribe from Afghanistan. See examples of Taimani rugs.
Taleghan is a town east of Qazvin and north of Tehran. See examples of Taleghan rugs.
Area in Southeastern Caucasus. Most Talish rugs are easy to recognize be course of their long format and empty fields.
Tashkale is a village located in the Karaman province in south central Anatolia. See examples of Tashkale rugs.
Taspinar is a village in Aksaray Province, Central Anatolia. Taspinar rugs have often prodominantly blue and red fields. See examples of Taspinar kilims.
Tehran is the capital of Iran, in the north of the country and a major market for Persian rugs. See examples of Tehran rugs.
The Turkmen Tekke (Teke) tribe inhabits Turkmenistan. Tekke main carpets are probably the most important weavings created by the Turkmen tribes.
Textile Museum, United States
The Textile Museum in Washington DC is a leading instution for research of oriental rugs and textiles.
Textile Museum Associates of Southern California
Textile Museum Associates of Southern California, was founded in 1985. TMA/SC presents educational programs, trips, and special events focused on handmade textiles, weavings, Oriental carpets and costumes from around the world.
Textile Museum of Canada
The Textile Museum in Toronto, Canada, is delivering programs and exhibitions dedicated to textile arts.
Making Tibetan rugs is an very old traditional craft. Tibetan rugs are most often made from Tibetan highland sheep’s wool. They are often made for domestic use as sitting mats, floor coverings, wall hangings and saddles.
Tiger rug designs are most often connected to Tibetan rugs but are also found in other carpet cultures and countries, for example China, India, Perrsia and Mongolia.
Timuri Balouch rugs are woven by nomads in Western Afghanistan.
A Turkmen storage bag with same width as a chuval but not so deep. See examples of Turkmen torbas.
Transylvanian rugs (Siebenbürgen rugs) are 17th-18th centuries Anatolian rugs found in protestant churches in the Romanian and Hungarian part of Transylvania.
Tree of Life motif
The Tree of Life is a universal symbol found in many religious traditions and philosophies. It is used in oriental rugs in many variations. See examples of Tree of Life rugs.
A Triclinium carpet was originally a set up of four carpets. A large main carpet, two runners and a carpet on the top. Later this set up were made in a single piece.
Theodor Tuduc was a famous Romanian rug forger. His reproductions and fake rugs included Transylvanian rugs, Holbein rugs, Lotto rugs and Spanish armorial carpets. The reproductions from his workshop in Romania were so execellent that he fooled museums, auction houses and collectors. These fake Tuduc rugs are now admired collectable objects.
Tuisarkhan is a town near Hamadan in the western Iran. The typical design for a Tuisarkhan rug includes a geometric medaillion with pendants.
Turkestan ( Turkistan )
Turkestan is a historic region of central Asia. Western, or Russian Turkestan extended from the Caspian Sea in the west to the Chinese frontier in the east and from the Aral-Irtysh watershed in the north to the borders of Iran and Afghanistan in the south. Eastern, or Chinese, Turkestan comprised the western provinces of China, now the Xinjiang Region. Southern, or Afghan, Turkestan referred to a small area of North Afghanistan. Politically, what was formerly called Russian Turkestan and Soviet Central Asia included the nations of Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, and Kyrgyzstan and the southern portion of Kazakhstan. See map of Central Asia.
Turkish and Islamic Arts Museum
The Turkish and Islamic Arts Museum ( TIEM – Türk ve İslam Eserleri Müzesi) is located in Sultanahmet Square in Istanbul close to the Blue Mosque. The museum has an excellent rug collection which also includes rare 13th century Seljuk carpets.
Turkmenistan is located in Central Asia, bordered by Kazakhstan to the northwest, Uzbekistan to the north and east, Afghanistan to the southeast, Iran to the south and southwest and the Caspian Sea to the west. Most Turkmen rugs are made in Turkmenistan.
Urgup is a town in Nevsehir Province in the historical region of Cappadocia. See examples of Urgup rugs.
Ushak ( Usak, Oushak )
Town in west central Anatolia. Ushak rugs have been woven in Ushak since the 16th century.
Central Asian rugs also include Uzbek rugs made in Uzbekistan. The most well known Uzbek rugs are Julkhurs, long coarse sleeping rugs, and Karakalpaks rugs.
A Vagireh (Wagireh) is a small sampler rug showing a small piece of a larger rug. See examples of Vagireh.
Veramin ( Varamin )
Veramin is a town north of Tehran. The rugs from Veramin are easy to recognize be course of their Mina Khani designs. Veramin was also a caravan town and a meeting place for tribes in the 19th century. See examples of Veramin bags and Veramin (Varamin) kilims.
Victoria and Albert Museum
The Victoria and Albert Museum (V&A) in London is the world’s largest museum of applied and decorative arts and design. The museum’s collection includes famous carpets like the Ardabil Carpet, The Salting Carpet, The Chelsea Carpet and more.
Viss is a village located in the Markazi Province of central Iran east of Hamadan. See examples of Viss rugs.
The Volkmannmeeting (Volkmann-treffen), an institution in the German-speaking world, is a casual get-together of Oriental carpet enthusiasts that goes back to 27 October 1971.
Wangden is a valley in Tibet and especially known for Wangden meditation mats.
The war rug tradition of Afghanistan has its origins because of Soviet occupation of Afghanistan in 1979. See examples of Afghan War rugs.
West Anatolian rug
The label West Anatolian rug is often used for rugs from the Bergama district. West Anatolia includes Bergama, Ghiordes, Ushak and far more towns and villages.
The Wiener Jagdteppich (Viennese Hunting Carpet) is a 16th century Safavid period carpet from Kashan. It is a part of the MAK Permanent Collection and has been taken over from the Imperial Court in 1922.
Xinjiang ( Sinkiang, Sinjiang )
Chinese province in the western part of the country. Also called Eastern Turkestan in rug literature. See map of Xinjiang. Khotan rugs, Yarkand rugs and Kashgar rugs are made in oase cities in Xinjiang.
The Yagcibedir rugs are produced by the Yayci Yoruks tribes living around Balikesir. The colors of Yagcibedir rugs are limited to red, indigo blue and white. Reda more about Yagcibedir designs in the article.
Yahyali is a town in Kayseri Province south of Kayseri and east of Nigde. See examples of Yahyali rugs.
A term used to describe village rugs in western Iran which have motifs of the Khamseh, Qashqai and Lori tribes. See examples of Yalameh rugs.
Yarkand is a county in the Xinjiang Region, China, located on the southern rim of the Taklamakan Desert and in the historical East Turkestan. See examples of Yarkand rugs.
A Turkish yastik is a small rug or bag for sitting against or leaning against. It can also be a cover.
An Yatak rug is an Anatolian shaggy pile rug and sleeping mat.
Yazd ( Yezd )
A central Iranian city weaving rugs of medallion designs similar to Kermans or Sarouks. Main colors are blue, red and ivory. Wefts can be either wool or cotton and warps are of cotton only. The asymmetrical knot is used. See examples of Yazd rugs.
Yesilhisar is a town between Nigde and Keyseri in Cental Anatolia. See examples of Yesilhisar rugs.
Yomut or Yomud is a Turkmen tribe that lives from Gorgan in Iran to Turkmenbashi and eastern Caspian shores in Turkmenistan. See examples of Yomut rugs.
Yuncu is a nomadic tribe from the northwest Anatolia. See examples of Yuncu rugs and Yuncu kilims.
Yuntdag in a mountain area south of Bergama and Yuntdag rugs are made in the villages of this area.
The Yoruks were pastoral nomads living in the mountains of Anatolia but now many have settled. See examples of Yoruk rugs and Yuruk kilims.
Zakatala ( Zakataly )
Zakatala is a small mountain city in the northern Azerbaijan in Caucasus. Zakatala rugs are all-wool and symetrically knotted.
Zandjan (Zanjan) is the capital of Zanjan Province in Iran. It is located between Tehran and Tabriz. See examples of Zandjan rugs.
Zarand is a city and county of Kerman Province. See examples of Zarand carpets and Zarand kilims.
Ziegler & Co. ( Ziegler )
Ziegler and Co. was a German firm based in Manchester (England) who was actively involved in carpet trade. Ziegler set up looms in Sultanabad and exported a large number of rugs from Iran to Europe from the mid 19th century until the early 20th century. Tabrizes, Mahals and Sultanabads produced by the Ziegler Co. are now known as Ziegler Carpets.
Carpets labelled Zili Sultan are Persian carpets with a design of repeated vases and flowers. See examples of Zili Sultan carpets.
Oriental Rugs: An illustrated Lexicon of Motifs, Materials, and Origins by Peter F. Stone
Oriental Rugs Complete Guide by Murray L. Eiland Jr. and Murray Eiland III
The Handmade Carpet, a Comprehensive Guide to Contemporary Rugs
Nazmiayal Collection Area Rug Guide