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A Dragon carpet in a blue ground, Late 18th century, Khanate Period, Azerbaijan


Price Realized 34,500 ($58,747)

Sale Information
Christie's Sale 6030
15 October 1998
London, King Street

Lot Description
The shaded indigo field with three columns of large stylised polychrome serrated palmettes linking bold serrated diagonal panels in white and sea-blue forming irregular shaped panels enclosing small floral motifs around stylised polychrome dragons, in a narrow sandy yellow border of angular palmette and vine between red spiralling ribbon stripes, slight wear, areas of repiling, smaller areas of restoration
12ft.6in. x 6ft.3in. (382cm. x 191cm.)
Warp: wool, ivory, Z2S
Weft: wool, ivory, Z2S; 3 shoots
Pile: wool, Z2S; symmetric, H40 x V42

Anon. sale, Sotheby's London, 14 October 1977, lot 2.
E. Cittone, Milan

Dall'Ogio, Marino: 'A White Ground Dragon Carpet: a study of the design and relevant comparisions, HALI Vol.II, no.1, Spring 1978, pl.7, p.18.

Pope, A. U.: Catalogue of a Loan Exhibition of Early Oriental Carpets, Chicago 1926, no.32.

Lot Notes
Alongside the main group of Caucasian dragon carpets, an early example of which is included in the Alexander Collection section of this sale, lot 222, is a group of carpets of similar design but different structure. This was discussed by Marino Dall'Oglio using a white ground carpet in the Wher Collection as a starting point. This group is typified by thinner yarns, usually a cotton or silk foundation, and a lack of weft cables, resulting in a much softer more pliable weaving. The best of the group, on a black ground, now in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, was formerly in the McMullan Collection (McMullan, Joseph V.: Islamic Carpets, New York, 1965, no.39, p.160-161). The drawing on that carpet contains all the elements seen in the dragon carpets such as the Alexander piece, indicating an early date. It is therefore thought that this small group (dall'Oglio lists six in all, of which the present example is one) was made contemporaneously with the main group, but in a different centre, probably further north-east in the Caucasus, possibly in the Shirvan region.


seen at New York International Tribal and Textile Arts Show, 20-24 May, 2005