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"The advantages of handspun yarn to machine spun yarn"
Rediscovery of Ancient Natural Dyes
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Difference between synthetically and naturally dyed rugs
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Galleries of ARFP Caucasian Azerbaijani Rugs
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Mamluk Carpet, late 15th century. Textile Museum. Acquired by George Hewitt Myers in 1953
Mamluk sultans ruled from their capital in Cairo, Egypt, from the time they wrested power from the Ayyubids in 1250 until their defeat by the Ottomans in 1517. Mamluk rugs show consistent color, weave structure, and layout, but appear unrelated to other known rug weaving traditions.
Textile Museum description:
Eye of Horus
This 15th-century Mamluk rug bears repeated images of a design well-known today from the art of ancient Egypt, the Eye of Horus. According to Egyptian myth, Horus, the falcon-headed god, lost his eye in a battle with the god Seth. Restored by the god Thoth, the Eye of Horus became associated with protection. The eye was often used in pairs on sarcophagi, thought to provide eyes for the dead.
From the Rhind Papyrus (1650 BCE), we also now know that the Horus Eye was used as a unit of measurement for grain. The full composition equaled one hekat, equivalent to approximately 6 quarts. Each part corresponds to a fractional measurement expressed as a geometric progression (1/2, 1/4, 1/8, 1/16, 1/32, 1/64).
The Mamluks' extensive use of this pattern, used in pairs to divide the circle into eighths, suggests that it held special meaning for them. Why the Mamluks incorporated the Eye of Horus into their rugs is not known, nor do we know if they knew of its more ancient significance.
Eye of Horus