Antique Kilim, Pirot, Southern Serbia.

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A magnificent large, nearly square, decorative kilim made and dated 1913 in the Pirot area of southern Serbia.
The colours are beautiful, as are the nicely spaced large diamond lozenges, surrounded by a powerful midnight-blue main border. The date, 1913, can be seen woven into the top right-hand corner of the main border.
Size: 4.00m x 3.90m (13' 2" x 12' 9").

Antique Soumak Carpet, Lesghi Region, Southern Daghestan, ...

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A most attractive and Soumak carpet in very good overall condition with just a few minor repairs. Woven in the Lesghi area of South Daghestan in the eastern Caucasus around 1900, the simple use of reds and blues makes for a handsome and decorative carpet.
Size: 3.80m x 2.20m (12' 6" x 7' 3")

Antique Timuri Flatweave, Sangtschuli Sub-Tribe, Borderlands of ...

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Flat-weaves of the Timuri Sangtschuli tribe are incredibly rare and this is one of the finest flat-weaves from this tribe that I've come across. In excellent condition and with just a few small areas of expert restoration on the selvedges, the fine soumak work has to be seen to be appreciated.
It is incredibly sophisticated work for a tribe, living in inhospitable conditions during the mid 19th century, and using a ground look to weave this remarkable piece.
The last similar Sangtschuli flat-weave to pass through my hands is illustrated in the third edition of my book 'Tribal Rugs - Treasures of the Black Tent' on page 94. However, what is more unusual about this piece, is the wide goat-hair selvedges - unique and extremely rare.
These flat-weaves are generally referred to as 'Baluch' in the unknowledgeable trade but in fact, are woven by the Timuri - Sangtschuli tribe on the borderlands of eastern Persia and western Afghanistan.
Size: 2.70m x 1.60m (8' 10" x 5' 3").

Antique Bread Sofreh, Baluch Tribes, Khorassan Province, ...

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This magnificent, finely woven and knotted-pile bread sofreh has been in my personal collection for a few years. It is one of the best of type that I've come across in 40 years of dealing and collecting.
The central aubergine field is in fine plain-weave technique and it is surrounded by a very finely knotted-pile border containing the continuous vine, symbolising the eternal cycle of life.
Bearing in mind it was made during the second half nineteenth century, this sofreh is in remarkable condition and is complete with brocade and plain-weave 'elems' or skirts.
Size: 3' 10" square

Antique Flat-Weave Shiraki, Khamseh Confederacy Tribes, Eastern ...

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Of all the flatwoven floor coverings, the least known is the 'palas'. The 'palas' was made by various tribes in Persia - the most common being from Kerman Province in the south and Khorassan Province in the north-east of the country. This particular palas is known as 'shiraki', made by Arab tribes within the Khamseh Confederacy of eastern Fars Province, south Persia circa 1900. The home of these nomads is between Abadeh and Darab and as far south to western Kerman and Minab. Many were woven in two halves and expertly joined together as well as in one complete piece, like this one. The pattern and design in all of them is provided by tiny repeating motifs, and in this case, the repeating pattern comprises tiny birds, woven in weft-float brocading on an ivory cotton background. Shiraki like this one, are rare.
Size: 2.13m x 1.68m (7' 0" x 5' 6").

Antique Ru Korssi, Timuri Sangtschuli Tribe, Borderlands ...

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Illustrated in my third edition 'Tribal Rugs - Treasures of the Black Tent' on page 103, the Ru Korssi was a decorative cover for the brazier - a low open wooden frame under which was placed a bowl of burning charcoal. The frame was covered with blankets and the ru korssi placed over the top. The inhabitants of the tent would then sit around this frame, warming themselves by placing their legs and hands under the warm cover. The word 'ru' literally means surface or a face, anything that is turned outwards and 'korssi' signifies a table or frame.
This beautiful cover, made by the Timuri - Sangtschuli tribe in the 19th century, is entirely in flatwoven - a plain-weave aubergine field and a main border intricately woven in reverse soumak technique with highlights of silk and metal-thread.
Size: 1.30m (4' 3") square.

Antique Wheat-Sack 'tacheh', Luri-Bakhtiari Tribes, The Chahar ...

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This stunning 'tacheh' or wheat-sack was once used for containing wheat but has now been opened-up to show the complete weaving for wall-hanging purposes. Made by Luri-Bakhtiari nomads in the Chahar Mahal region of western Persia circa 1900, the tacheh contains a central, knotted-pile bottle-shape in the centre and what appears to be a large red/green flower. Each tacheh has a different knotted-pile design which relates to the family that made it. The last woven tachehs survived into the 1940s but when plastic sacks and gunny sacks arrived in the bazaars of Iran from the West, there was no longer a need to make them! This one and the others on my website are amongst the last remaining survivors of this lost art.
Size: 1.04m x 1.07m (3' 5" x 3' 6").

Antique Sofreh, Timuri - Sangtschuli Tribe, Borderlands ...

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This dining sofreh is unusual for its small, narrow size. They are more usually around 91cm wide, whereas this one is only 43cm, so my guess is that it was specially made for a young child - possibly for the son of the tribal chief? He too, was an important person within the tribe, being the successor to his father.
Woven by a Timuri - Sangtschuli tribal weaver circa 1880-1900, the sofreh is in complete condition with the central part woven in soumak technique. The selvedges are strongly bound in goat-hair.
Dining sofrehs were used in the tents to place food, bread and tea on while the nomads would sit around the sofreh cross-legged and eat.
Sofrehs of this age and type now are rare and this is a very fine example of late 19th century work. These sofrehs look particularly good draped over a chest for maximum impact.
Size: 1.45 x 0.43m (4' 9" x 1' 5").

Antique Kurdish Kilim, Bijar Region, Persian Kurdistan. ...

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This beautiful and remarkable kilim was woven by settled Kurds in the Bijar area of Persian Kurdistan circa 1900. The beautiful indigo-blue ground contains a myriad of roses and in the centre, the depiction of a rose bursting into life with the warmth of the sun - the most powerful symbol in nomadic life. The natural colours are truly superb - different shades of blue, green, red and golden-yellow.
Size: 2.35 x 1.35m (7' 9" x 4' 5").

Antique Ru Korssi, Baluch Tribes, Western Afghanistan. ...

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The 'Ru Korssi' was a flat-woven decorative cover for the 'mangal' - a wooden frame placed in the tent or mud-brick dwelling under which bowls of burning charcoal were placed. The mangal was then covered with blankets and on the very top, was place the symbolic, decorative cover, the ru korssi.
This stunning ru korssi was woven by Baluch nomads around 1900 and incorporates 'trees-of-life' in the central natural aubergine ground and on either side protected by powerful borders.
The horizontal borders at the top and bottom contain one border line in knotted-pile. Also note at the very bottom of the aubergine field, two differing symbols on either side of the central tree.
I believe this represents the male and female symbols representing eternal life and fertility.
Size: 1.52m x 1.42m (5' 0" x 4' 8").

Antique Tribal Bread Sofreh, Kordi Nomads, Quchan ...

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I just love the charm of this little flatweave sofreh - a woven cloth for kneading the dough to make the wonderful 'lavash' or flat-bread. Woven in basic nomadic conditions on a very narrow loom, where two parts were woven separately and then sewn together, joining up almost perfectly!
The border has been knotted in pile and within the un-dyed ivory ground, the weaver has depicted various important symbols and some animals. The weaver was of Kurdish origin, part of the Kurds who were focibly moved from Kurdistan to Quchan in north-eastern Persia in the 15th century. This charming little bread sofreh dates to the last quarter of the 19th century.
Size: 94cm x 91cm (3' 1" x 3' 0").

Antique Kilim, Senneh, Persian Kurdistan.

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This beautiful and elegant kilim from the Senneh region of Persian Kurdistan, must rank as one of the very best I've handled in 40 years of dealing in antique rugs and kilims. Made during the third quarter of the nineteenth century, the weave is not just incredibly fine but the design is very unusual. In the main, the majority of Senneh kilims have a small 'herati' pattern all over but here we see the small 'herati' pattern in the central square surrounding a large, ivory 'eye' and around this central square, are depicted large 'botehs'.
This kilim has been hung on the wall for many years as it came to me with hanging loops attached to the back, and thus it has been preserved and I suspect, a prized possession to the last owner.
Size: 2.00m x 1.27m (6' 6" x 4' 2").