Antique Kuba rug,
early 20th century, Konagkend District,
possibly Afurja village, Mountainous Kuba Region, North East
In the centre is a date that is difficult to read: 1266 = 1839 or more
likely 1322 = 1904
The midnight-blue central field comprises 26 stepped rectangles or
diamonds. They are smaller than those of the previous rug. L. Kerimov
reports that the weavers call these göls atda buta (boteh). They are
arranged in 17 staggered horizontal rows and in three vertical rows. In
between, there are smaller medallions with four arrows in the centre and
rosettes, cross-hooks, etc. The depiction of camels and, more
significantly, pitchers, gives the carpet a strong sense of purpose,
perhaps religious. Camels are holy animals and pitchers are the symbol of
religious ablution and purification.
L. Kerimov calls the main border on a light ground zulfu alem (L. Kerimov
I, plate 155, No 3). This border is also called "crab border". Two minor
borders with carnations on a dark-blue ground flank the main border.
According to L. Kerimov, a characteristic of this rug, apart from its
distinctive medallions, are its proportions. The rugs of this group are
almost twice as long as they are wide.
Warp: Wool, Z3 S, divory (3 threads dark brown or 1 X ivory +2X darkbrown).
Weft: Cotton, Z2 S, white, 2 wefts: 1st tight, 2nd waved.
Pile: Wool,Z2 (blue and yellow also Z 4, red also Z3),
Knots: Symmetrical 3, \, 25,H42xV30 = 1,260 Kn/dm2.
Handle: Velours, not thin, extremely lightly ribbed.
Upper End: 0.5 cm blue cotton simple tapestry weave.
Lower End: c. 1 cm blue cotton simple tapestry weave.
Selvedge: 0.5 cm blue cotton shirazi around 2 ribs in figure-of-eight
wrapping with supplemental threads.
Remarks: An outstanding piece of very good quality wool, knotting and
colours; the well-balanced design perfects the whole. Literature: L.
Kerimov II, ill. 153, p. 187 (see also 32-38); D. Eder, be. tit, p. 281,
published at Siyawouch
Azadi "Azerbaijani Caucasian