About the Antique Rugs of the Future Project

Sheep Breeds of Azerbaijan

Sorting, Washing, Carding, Spinning

"The advantages of handspun yarn to machine spun yarn"

Rediscovery of Ancient Natural Dyes
Our Natural Dyestuffs


Difference between synthetically and naturally dyed rugs

Weaving and Finishing Steps

Galleries of ARFP Caucasian Azerbaijani Rugs

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Karabagh (or Gendje) pictorial rug, c. 1875, Azerbaijan. 117 x 170cm (3'10"x5'7")

While this very interesting prayer rug shares many features with the 'tree' Karabagh in plate 25 (Ralph Kaffel's Caucasian Prayer rug), it appears to be more closely related to a contemporaneous prayer rug (dated 1879) from the collection of Gerard BoŽly, published as a "Connoisseur's Choice" in Hali. While BoŽly's has the more unusual palette, which includes a rare turquoise, the similarities in use of colour and overall design are striking. Both rugs feature a central tree divided into vertical stripes (eleven stripes in BoŽly's piece, seven here) against a red ground beneath blue spandrels. Here, the blue of the spandrels is darker than the blues used elsewhere. Smaller trees flank the central one, and the 'grounds' of the trees are decorated with stepped lozenges. While in BoŽly's rug the tree motif is repeated in the spandrels, here the prayer niche is flanked by fabulous birds. Other small animals dot the mihrabs of both rugs. Both employ unusual border designs: BoŽly's uses a stylized 'Kufic' variant (a design presumed to have evolved from the Kufic script;; while the rug shown here features segmented florettes in yellow, red, blue and teal.


published Ralph Kaffel's Caucasian Prayer rug, plate 26
Lit: Ralph Kaffel's Caucasian Prayer rug, plate 26