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Posted by Jack Johnson on November 27th, 2019
Almost any book ever written on the subject of Persian rugs will begin with an introduction of the "Pazyryk" rug found in Siberia during excavations. This is the oldest hand-knotted rug in existence today and its description makes a suitable introduction to books that study the history of rugs. However, another one of the oldest Persian rugs known to the mankind is the Persian Ardebil Sheykh Safi rug. There is not much information as to its exact history, and this is perhaps the reason it is not discussed quite that often. Following is a brief history of this unique masterpiece.
In North West Persia, and in the city of Ardebil, a pair of amazingly beautiful Persian rugs were discovered in a mosque, the burial place of Sheykh Safi al-Din, the ancestor of the founder of the Safavid dynasty. Later, these carpets came to be known simply as "Ardebil" rugs. Back in 1893, an art referee persuaded Victoria and Alberts museum in London to purchase one of these rugs. The other pair is a bit more finely knotted and is now on display at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. But on this rug, borders and part of the central field are missing. A portion of the missing areas are believed to have been used to repair the carpet owned by the V& A. The Ardebil carpet measures over 17 by 34 feet, and is considered as one of the largest, oldest Persian rugs in existence today.
Almost certainly, the pair of Ardebil carpets were a royal commission and would have taken approximately four years to weave. However, nobody knows where exactly they have been woven. At one end of the Ardabil carpet, an inscription dates it back to 1540 AD. After some minor and major repairs on this carpet, it was placed behind glass in Gallery 42 of the Victoria and Alberts meseum where it remained on display until 1974. Throughout the years, many visitors to the museum have enjoyed its adorable pattern and wonderful colors. Recently, this rug has been moved to the "Jameel Gallery", and is certainly the main object of attraction to this place. It is displayed flat under a suspended canopy and can be viewed from all sides. The canopy forms the top of the case which encloses the Ardabil carpet, protecting it from general gallery lighting. The unique characteristic of the "Sheykh Safi" pattern is that the four corners will form the center medallion if attached to one another. This wonderful pattern has been copied in many Persian carpets and Oriental rugs such as Mashad, Kerman, Tabriz, and Sarouk. Since its acquisition, the Ardebil carpet has been cleaned once and is very unlikely to have the strength of getting another wash in the future.
Hans is the owner of Rug Firm, a direct importer of finest hand knotted Persian and Oriental rugs located in Southern California. Rug Firm is dedicated to providing its customers with high quality rugs at reasonable prices that will add value and beauty to their home for many years to come. Free shipping and money back guarantee at Rug Firm, where quality and investment meet. Professional wash and repair services available.
About the AuthorJack Johnson
Joined: November 18th, 2019
Articles Posted: 35
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