Antique Baluch Rug, Mahdad Khani Tribe, Khorassan, ...

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An extremely handsome rug in near-mint condition, made by the Mahdad Khani Baluch tribe in Khorassan Province, north-east Persia circa 1880. The rug has an unusual compartmentalised design of Turkmen-inspired 'kotchak' symbols and is complete with full plain-weave and brocaded skirts each end. A very collectable rug.
Size:2.44m x 1.17m (8' 0" x 3' 10").

Antique Kordi Tribal Bag-face, Quchan Region, Khorassan ...

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Like the previous bag-face, this beautiful weaving was made by Kordi tribes in the Quchan region of north-east Persia circa 1900. The colours are beautifully vegetable and the soumak weave is fine and superbly executed. As mentioned in the previous description, I'm not convinced such pieces were made as 'balishts' (pillow-bags) as the weave is not condusive to laying one's head on! Therefore, I suspect they were dowry pieces, showing the prowess of the weaver as a desirable wife, and they might have been simply decorative to these nomads. Today, in the western world, they can also be decorative - used to cover a chest or table-top.
Size: 69cm x 36cm (2' 3" x 1' 2").

Antique Bag-face (balisht), Kordi Tribes of Quchan, ...

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The 'balisht' was made as a pillow-bag - usually with the softest, most lustrous woollen pile. However, I'm not convinced that these Kordi soumak-weave bag-faces were used for this purpose due to the coarse weave. I have never seen a Kordi 'balisht' like this with a back, which makes me wonder about their original use and not, I suspect, as a pillow-bag. Maybe they were dowry pieces - very finely and intricately woven, and possibly used as some sort of cover? Whatever they were, they are most attractive weavings and ideal for western use in decorating a chest or table-top.
Size: 87cm x 38cm (2' 10" x 1' 3").

Antique Khamseh Confederacy Rug, Fars Province, South-West ...

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This charming little rug was made by Arab nomads within the Khamseh Confederacy - a confederation of 5 tribes - in Fars Province, south-west Persia circa 1900. The rug is in excellent condition - full pile - with a glowing indigo-blue field and spandrels of madder-red. Within the spandrels are stylised peacocks - symbols of immortality and divine protection.
Size: 1.60m x 1.15m (5' 3" x 3' 9").

Antique Turkmen Rug, Ersary Tribes, Middle Amu ...

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Here we see a most unusual rug of the Middle Amu Darya Ersary nomads comprising a compartmentalised design containing lozenges with a multitude of small shrubs. The natural colours are beautifully soft and the rug is in overall very good condition albeit with an evenly-low pile all over.
Size: 1.27m x 0.82m (4' 2" x 2' 8").

Antique Afshar Carpet, Kerman Province, Southern Persia. ...

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Just in, this elegant carpet made by Afshar nomads in Kerman Province, southern Persia, circa 1870-1880. The carpet is in very good overall condition and comprises a 'boteh' design on a madder-red ground - the boteh or flame symbol, originally believed to have originated in Kerman amongst the Zoroastrians. The carpet retains its plain-weave kilim skirts at both ends and I like the depiction of the three small quadrupeds in the lower left side of the red field.
Size: 2.62m x 1.48m (8' 7" x 4' 10").

Antique Prayer-Rug, Timuri Tribes, Western Afghanistan.

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Here we see a good early prayer-rug made by Timuri nomads around 1860. The indigo-blue field contains a stylised 'tree-of-life' and the brocaded skirts at each end are intact - a rare feature these days. The rug is in very good overall condition, albeit having the usual brown-dye corrosion, more obvious in the lower part of the field.
Size: 1.40m x 0.97m (4' 7" x 3' 2").

Antique Baluch 'Ru-Zini' (saddle-cover), Salar Khani Sub-Tribe, ...

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Taken from my private collection and illustrated in my newly published 3rd edition 'Tribal Rugs - Treasures of the Black Tent' page 128, this rare and finely knotted Salar Khani Baluch saddle-cover was made circa 1880-1890. It comprises an overall 'herati' pattern - stylised fish swimming in a water-garden - and has stylised quadrupeds - probably deer or gazelle - depicted throughout. In near-mint condition, the wool quality is superb, as you'd expect from the best of 19th century Baluch work, and as far as I'm aware, few like this exist.
Size: 1.22m x 0.66m (4' 0" x 2' 2").

Antique Turkmen Engsi (yurt-door rug), Teke Tribes, ...

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This magnificent Engsi - a rug used as a yurt-door hanging - was made by Teke Turkmen tribes in the Merv Oasis around 1850-1860. The rug has a beautiful colour palette - predominantly madder-red - a rare main border design and in excellent condition with very soft, velvety wool.
Size: 1.40m x 1.09m (4' 7" x 3' 7").

Antique Salt-Bag, Baluch Sanjrani Nomads, Chagai, Baluchistan. ...

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Made by the Sanjrani Baluch nomads in Dalbandin, Chagai region of Baluchistan circa 1900-1920, this salt-bag is in complete, original condition and retains its long braided tassels - symbolising good luck - and the tassels also contain cowrie shells.
Size: 61cm (2') including tassels x 27cm (11").

Antique Saddle-Bags, Afshar Nomads, Southern Persia.

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These saddle-bags or 'khorjin' in Persian, were made by Afshar nomads in Kerman Province, southern Persia around 1880, and are in very good condition with original plain-weave back. The knotted-pile faces were made with good lustrous wool from the mountain sheep and leather binding has been over-sewn at each end of the bridge resiliance. They have been well-used as can be seen by the back, yet remain attractive and collectable bags of which few complete saddle-bags from this 19th century period have survived.
Size: 1.30m x 0.65m (4' 3" x 2' 2").

Antique Zili (tent-hanging), Baku Region, Azerbaijan.

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Illustrated in the newly published 3rd edition of my book 'Tribal Rugs - Treasures of the Black Tent' page 278, I sold this rare and beautiful Zili in 2006 and it has just come back to me. The madder-red and indigo-blue squares contain adult and baby peacocks or winged griffins, and was made in extremely fine balanced plain-weave with continuous and discontinuous wefts. A superb and highly collectable wall hanging, made in the Baku region of Azerbaijan around 1880. Such pieces are a rare find these days - most found in today's market are fragments.
Size: 1.90m x 1.30m (6' 3" x 4' 3").

Antique Shahsevan Mafrash Panel Flatweave, Moghan Region, ...

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Here we see four Shahsevan mafrash (bedding-bag) panels expertly sewn together to make a floor rug. The panels are stunning - stylised peacocks dominating the complete piece - a most attractive way of displaying individual panels.
Size: 1.88m x 1.04m (6' 2" x 3' 5").

Antique Prayer-Rug, Timuri - Salar Khani Tribes, ...

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Just arrived, a beautiful, finely-knotted prayer-rug made by Salar Khani nomads, a sub-tribe of the Timuri, around 1900. The overall field design consists of small Turkmen 'kochaks' with the borders framing the central field most attractively. The rug is in excellent condition with intricately brocaded skirts at each end. A truly stunning little rug.
Size: 1.48m x 0.89m (4' 10" x 2' 11").

Antique Afshar Rug, Neiriz, Kerman Province, Southern ...

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This small Afshar rug, made in the Neiriz region of Kerman Province in southern Persia circa 1900, has an ivory ground incorporating a 'herati' style pattern. The rug is complete and other than some brown-dye corrosion, is in reasonably good condition and priced accordingly.
Size: 1.40m x 1.17m (4' 7" x 3' 10").

'Tribal Rugs -Treasures of the Black Tent' ...

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Special Offer £40.00

Tribal Rugs - Treasures of the Black Tent ‘Tribal Rugs – Treasures of the Black Tent’ was first published in October 1997 and has been out of print for several years now. The second edition was reprinted in 2010 and went out of print in September 2014. Exciting news! 300 copies of the 3rd edition have just arrived - 25th May 2017! Please contact me by e-mail or telephone if you wish to buy a copy. This new book contains a much larger chapter on the Turkmen tribes and extensive up-dating throughout. I have removed the chapter dedicated to the rugs of Anatolia as this is a huge area which I cannot cover in a general book, and the chapter relating to new projects has also been removed. I have therefore concentrated on the Turkmen tribes, the Baluch and Timuri tribes inhabiting the border-lands of Iran and Afghanistan, the Persian tribes and lastly, the village rugs from the tribes that inhabit the Caucasus. The book is an exploration of one of the most ancient crafts in the world. Beginning with the discovery of the oldest complete rug, which has been dated to the 4th-5th century BC, the reader is taken on a journey through the weaving history of the nomadic peoples of Iran, Afghanistan, The Caucasus and Central Asia. Twenty chapters will introduce different tribal groups and illustrate the rugs, carpets, kilims and utilitarian dowry bags attributed to their weavers. Tribal Rugs is both a celebration of the woven legacy left by the nomadic tribes and a tribute to the skill and artistry of the women who created these wonderful works of tribal art. I hope that it will provide an introduction for the novice and excite the more knowledgeable to further study. ‘Tribal Rugs – Treasures of the Black Tent’ was acclaimed as “ of the finest books written on tribal rugs.” (Ghereh International Review).

Antique Khorjin (mini saddle-bags), Afshar Nomads of ...

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This gorgeous pair of mini saddle-bags ('khorjin' in Persian), was made by Afshar nomads in Aqta'e, Kerman Province circa 1900-1920 and depicts roses in each of the bag-faces and roses in the ivory border. The rose originated in Persia before being grown in France and the UK. The use of a pea-green colour in the central field of each bag-face is unusual and I love the 'bridge' with its symbolic flowing water - important of course, in order to keep the roses alive! This khorjin is in near-mint condition with its original madder-red plain-weave back.
Refer to Parviz Tanavoli's newly published book 'Khorjins - Tribal and Rural Weaves from Iran' to see an almost identical example on pages 80-81.
Size: 87cm x 34cm (2' 10" x 1' 1").

Antique Turkmen Torba, Ersary Tribes, Middle Amu ...

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Recently arrived from Turkmenistan, this beautiful Turkmen torba was made by Ersary nomads in the Beshir area of the middle Amu Darya region circa 1860/1870. The subtle natural colours are outstanding and the torba is in near-mint condition with a soft, lustrous woollen pile.
Size: 1.45m x 0.33m (4' 9" x 1' 1").

Baluch Tribal Rug, Khorassan Province, North-East Persia. ...

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This magnificent large Baluch tribal rug has an overall design of stylised flowers in wonderful natural colours. The rug was found in a grubby condition hanging on a wall, and therefore has been preserved, due to its near-mint condition. It even retains its complete flat-woven skirts at each end - quite remarkable. Now washed, the wool is soft and lustrous and the rug is ready for an inviting floor!
Size: 2.50m x 1.35m (8' 3" x 4' 5").

Baluch Tribal Rug, Khorassan Region, North-West Persia. ...

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The dark-brown oxidised field colour creates an overall lattice design in a 3-dimensional effect as can be seen in the close-up images. I love the tiny quadrupeds within the ivory-coloured nectar-blossom flowers. If you look closely, you will see how the weaver has subtly and very cleverly, depicted males and females, symbolising the creation of life in Paradise. The knotted-pile skirts are stunning. A very handsome rug of the Baluch nomads of Khorassan Province made circa 1880.
Size: 2.12m x 1.14m (7' 0" x 3' 9").

Flat-weave, Shahsevan Tribes of Varamin, North-Central Persia. ...

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Visually stunning! The symbolic depiction of flowing water in this 'eye-dazzler' flat-weave made in the Varamin region of north-central Persia by Shahsevan nomads around 1880.
Size: 2.00m x 1.32m (6' 7" x 4' 4").

'The Persian Carpet' - Lefevre & Partners ...

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Published in 1977, this book covers a selection of city, village and tribal rugs and carpets. The book is in very good condition other than a mark on the cover.

'Oriental Rugs - A Complete Guide' by ...

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Beautifully illustrated book on oriental rugs in general, published in 1998.
The price is plus postage.

'The Qashqa'i of Iran' - Whitworth Art ...

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From the World of Islam Festival 1976, this soft-cover exhibition catalogue was produced by the Whitworth Art Gallery at the University of Manchester. The book contains a fascinating text on the weavings of the Qashqa'i nomads of south-western Iran with black and colour photographs.
Rare and in very good condition.