Few tribal rugs convey the sheer elegance and grace as this fine silk-wefted Qashqai corridor carpet. The Turkic ancestors of the Qashqai first arrived in Persia in the 11th and 12th centuries. Legend holds that they were moved south to the area surrounding Shiraz from Northwest Persia by the first Safavid ruler, Shah Ismail (r. 1501-24) in order to secure this vulnerable region along the Persian Gulf from Portuguese incursions. By the 18th century, the local influence of the Qashqai in south Persia rivaled that of the Imperial government and the Qahqai became a de facto state within a state. As early as this time, the rulers of the tribe set up formal weaving workshops. Like other nomadic pastoralists, the wealth of the Qashqai was based on their flocks. Carpet weaving allowed tribal leaders to turn their wool into a finished product and, ultimately, hard currency. This exceptional piece represents the best of this weaving tradition. Mimicking both the look and feel of fine Persian silk and wool textiles, vertical stripes are drawn across the field and are imbued with pure radiant saturated color. Columns of flowering shrubs alternate with two distinct forms of vine-scroll. The dramatic border draws an idiosyncratic local (but highly successful) version of a formal Persian alternating palmette type, with colorful foliage and flowers illuminated against an indigo ground. This is a clear masterpiece of south Persian textile art.
QashqaiMid 19th C.
South Persian Tribal
- Areas of minor restoration. We have rephotographed this piece and hope to have a photo online soon that shows the true beauty of the colors.
- Being sold on behalf of The Thomas D. Cook family
- 6' 0"
- 12' 0"
- RUG ID: