Herat Antique Oriental Rugs



Prayer Rug
Northeast Persia
Northwest Afghanistan

4' 6" x 3' 5"
Cat. #:

This rug belongs to a very rare group of tribal weavings about which little is known.

There appears to be only five (5) published examples. (See addendum in the Literature section below.)

Three (3) are attributed to 'Baluch' weavers.

See: W. Grote-Hasenbalg, Der Orientteppich, 1922, vol. 3, pl. 96

See: Bausback, Franz, Alte Knupfarbeiten Der Belutscher, p. 8, (1980)

See: MacDonald, Brian, Tribal Rugs, p. 224, pl. # 163 (1997)

Two (2) of the rugs with similar design, structure and color are attributed to Ersari-Beshir weavers.

See: Hali # 47 - Auction Price Guide, p. 90, October, 1989

See Elmby, Hans - Antique Turkmen Carpets, # 4, (1988), p. 32, pl. 59

All five have these elements: similar hand panel placement, similar symbolic designs in the hand panels, a 'kurbaghe' gul in the mihrab, two guls in the lower field and strong Turkmen color and design influences in the border.

All dyes are from natural dye sources.

The age of this rug is difficult to determine with precision.

Elements of color, space and design suggest perhaps mid-century origin but that is subject to good faith discussion and, perhaps, disagreement.

Regardless, it is old, rare and a welcome addition to the collection of one who holds tribal artifacts in high esteem.

Condition: Very good. Full pile with no damage or wear.

Wool, undyed ivory, light and dark brown. On one level with no displacement.

Wool, undyed ivory, light and dark brown. Two shots.

Asymmetrical inclined to the right.

Three cords consisting of two warps per cord. Wool wrapping is not original.


Original ends at top and bottom are lost. Both ends are stabilized with very little loss of pile.


Moderately supple.

On Request

See titles listed in the Description section. Since the original posting of this unusual prayer rug, related examples have emerged. An interesting article can be found at the site rugbam.blogspot.com.
This rug was previously published in MacDonald cited above.

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