The Coronation Carpet

In the previous post The Ardabil Carpet, it was mentioned that the companion carpet was in the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. The carpet can be found here, but is not on display. However, the LACMA holds another important carpet- the Coronation Carpet. The carpet was made a decade earlier than the Ardabil, between 1520-1530 CE in Safavid Persia. It is a knotted pile in wool on a cotton foundation fabric, 701 x 365.76 cm. There is not much information available on the LACMA website, but they do have pictures with zoom. I would recommend the LACMA website for the zoom but if you follow the links on the Ardabil Carpet post through to the V&A, there are articles there on the construction of Persian carpets.
Recommended Reading
Persian rug history.
Medieval Textiles- Issue 30, Dec 2001. Via Google Docs.

Some carpet pages


This carpet page is from the Qur’an of Ibn al-Bawwāb, from 11th century Baghdad. It is currently in the Chester Beatty Library, where it has great zoom.

Made in 1153, this Arabic Qur’an has two carpet pages opening the book. Currently in the Harry Ransom Centre in the Books Before Gutenburg section.

A carpet page done by Arghûn Shâh, a well known painter in 1375. Possibly in Cairo (please let me know if you find an exact location).

This is a Jewish carpet page from 15th century Yemen (the date given in the binding is 1469). The first half of the book is a Grammatical introduction or Makhberet ha-Tigan and the second half is Pentateuch (the five books of Moses) with masorah magna and masora parva. It also has other carpet pages in Arabic-

This means that not only Jewish scholars worked on the book, but also Muslim scholars. It is currently in the British Library.
Bibliography
The Qur’anic Manuscripts In Museums, Institutes, Libraries & Collections.
An Introduction to Hebrew Manuscripts by Joseph Gutmann , Evelyn M. Cohen , Menahem Schmelzer , Malachi Beit-Arié. A lecture available to read from the NY Public Library. Via Fathom.
Arabic Art Forms in Spanish Book Production by the Bodleian Library.
Online Gallery: Sacred Texts by the British Library.
Observations on Illustrated Byzantine Psalters by John Lowden. JStor article.
Hebrew Manuscript Painting in Late Medieval Spain: Signs of a Culture in Transition by Katrin Kogman-Appel. JStor article.
Jewish Art and Non-Jewish Culture: The Dynamics of Artistic Borrowing in Medieval Hebrew Manuscript Illumination by Katrin Kogman-Appel. JStor article.

The Ardabil carpet


This can be found in the Victoria and Albert Museum in London. Hand knotted in silk and wool, the length is 1044cm and the width 535.5cm. Woven into the carpet is Arabic writing, which translates to-

‘Except for thy threshold, there is no refuge for me in all the world.
Except for this door there is no resting-place for my head.
The work of the slave of the portal, Maqsud Kashani.’

There is also a date woven in, which is 946 in the Muslim calendar. This is AD 1539 – 1540 in the Western calendar. There were two Ardabil carpets, in the shrine of Shaykh Safi al-Din when it suffered damage from an earthquake in 1873. One rug was damaged and the other used to patch it up. thus there was a full carpet and one with no border. They were then sold off, to raise funds to fix the shrine. It was eventually purchased by the V&A in 1893 for £2000, on the word of William Morris. The other rug eventually ended up in the Los Angeles County Museum of Art.

Bibiography
The design of the Ardabil carpet.
How the Ardabil carpet was made.
The Ardabil carpet and the V&A.