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Victoria and Albert Museum antique Shirvan Marasali Kabistan prayer rug / namazlyg, mid 19th century, Shirvan Region, Azerbaijan.

Place of origin: Caucasus (made)
Date: 19th century (made)
Museum number: 410-1880
Gallery location: In store

Physical description
Single niche carpet, 19th century

WARP: cream wool; Z3S; 23 threads per inch (90 per dm).

WEFT: cream wool; Z3S; 2 shoots after each row of knots; 13 knots per inch (48 per dm).

PILE: wool; 10 colours: dark red, red, dark yellow, green, light green, dark blue, blue, dark brown, purple, cream; symmetrical knot tied around
2 threads; 150 knots per sq. inch (2160 per sq. dm).

SIDE FINISH: missing

END FINISH: missing.

DESIGN: dark yellow ground with dark blue saw-toothed lattice with white-centred crosses at junctions framing 12 bands of eight or nine floral
sprigs, some stylised; these offset, with diverging mirrored diagonals rising from the central sprig on the lowest band and with a cluster of red
and white stylised flowers at the entrance to the niche which holds a further 11 sprigs. The lattice continues into the two spandrels where
there are five more bands of sprigs, a comb and small floral motifs. The angular band that outlines the niche has a white ground bearing the
main border design. The band is outlined on both sides, beyond a narrow guard stripe, by a green saw-toothed narrow border, itself outlined
in red and dark blue.

Main border: cream ground with dark blue geometric meander linking angular botehs decorated with diagonal lines attached to a dark blue
block with light green tracery. Between the botehs are small flowerheads and pairs of five short parallel dark blue lines at right angles to the

Inner border: reciprocal trefoil design in dark brown and dark blue.

Outer border: dark blue ground bearing a cream meander with a dark red or purple cross on either side of which is a red, yellow or green
stylised curled leaf.

Museum number: 410-1880
URL: http://collections.vam.ac.uk/item/O117772/carpet/