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



Antique Kuba or Baku rug, late 19th century, Azerbaijan

251cm x 126cm / 8'3" x 4'2", Late 19th century, Knots: 50 (v) x 31 (h) = 1,550 / dm2.

A fantastic Shirvan Surahani 'garden' rug with a shield pattern with green and white latch-hooked diamonds within red octagons. Peter F. Stone calls this shield pattern the "turret design type" which, apart from the Shirvan area, is also to be "found on rugs attributed to the Kazak, Daghestan and Kuba districts" (on Rugs of the Caucasus: Structure and Design, Greenleaf Co., 1984, pp. 156). When this design appears on Kuba rugs Ulrich Schurmann calls it the "Ordutch-Konagend" pattern (on Caucasian Rugs, Poolesville, 1990, pp. 278).The centre of each of the three middle latch-hooked diamonds has a Lesghi star, a rather unusual feature. Two additional Lesghi stars are placed at the corners of the central field's top. On another Shirvan Surahani ?garden' rug with a shield pattern with latch-hooked diamonds within octagons Ian Bennett write that "these latch-hook diamonds within the outer octagons are attractive features not previously encountered on rugs of this type" (on Oriental Rugs - Volume 1 Caucasian, Suffolk, UK, 1981, pp. 259). This rug's colours are uncommonly bold and balanced. The main border is a beautiful development of the traditional "leaf-and-calyx" border design. The two darker floral borders around it suggest a more Northern attribution (Kuba). But the fact that the main motif of this rug may have been made in places hundreds of kilometers away suggests that several motifs were used outside their original place/village.

Literature - See somewhat similar rugs on: Ian Bennett, Oriental Rugs - Volume 1 Caucasian, Suffolk, UK, 1981, plates 277-279, 283, 333, 336; Ulrich Schurmann, Caucasian Rugs, Poolesville, 1990, plate 105; E. Gans-Ruedin, Caucasian Carpets, Thames and Hudson, London, 1986, pp. 194-195 & 282-283; Murray Eiland Jr., Oriental Rugs - A New Comprehensive Guide, Little, Brown and Company, Boston, 1981, illustr. 253.

Jewels Of The Caucasus