The veil of Hisham II

veilofhishamii This textile, thought to have been a veil, was found in a reliquary in the Santa María del Rivero church alter. It had been wrapped around the item in the reliquary but the textile has now been restored.

It is 109 cm long and 18 cm wide base fabric of linen with the decoration a silk & linen tapestry weave. It has tiraz bands in the decoration, with the inscription of-

“In the name of god the indulgent, the merciful”

as well as-

“May divine blessing, prosperity and long life be attributed to the imam, god’s servant, Hisham, he who is the object of his benevolence, the emir of all believers.”

Tiraz detail-
The kufic tiraz talks of Hisham, a 10th-11th century Caliph that ruled Cordoba during the Umayyad era. The animals in the tapestry woven roundels are birds and cats- hishamveilroundeldetail
The textile can be seen through the Qantara website although the textile is in the Real Academia de la Historia in Madrid.

Recommended reading
Al-Andalus: The Art of Islamic Spain edited Jerrilyn Dodds. Available to read online at the Internet Archive.
The Origin and Early Development of Floriated Kūfic by Adolf Grohmann. JStor article.
Material for a History of Islamic Textiles up to the Mongol Conquest by R. B. Serjeant. JStor article.
Ṭirāz Textiles from Egypt: Production, Administration and Uses of Ṭirāz Textiles from Egypt Under the Umayyad, ʻAbbāsid and Fāṭimid Dynasties by Jochen Sokoly. Phd thesis.

Some Nasrid textiles

goldennasridtextile This textile comes from Spain, during the reign of the Nasrid dynasty in the 13th century. This textile is 7.6 cm high and 12.1 cm wide. It is silk, in a lampas weave, with gilt silk thread. It came from the vestment robes of the followers of St. Valerius and probably worn on January 22nd, the Feast day of St Valerius. The textile is in the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

nasridtextilewithtambourineplayes This textile is from 13th century Spain, also silk lampas with gilt silk thread. It is 10.3 cm high and 10.8 cm wide. The textile features tambourine players wearing clothes with geometric designs. This textile piece was found with other textile fragments in a 13th century manuscript in the cathedral of Vich. This textile can be found in the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

nasridtextilegeometricstar This textile is a 14th century Nasrid textile, also silk weave lampas with gilt silk thread. It is 11.4 cm high and 8.9 cm wide. The design of a geometric floral/star theme that is common in Nasrid textiles, illuminations, wood work, book binding and stucco work. This textile is in the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Recommended reading
Western Islamic Art by Don Aanavi. JStor article.
Nasrid plasterwork: symbolism, materials & techniques by Victor Borges. V&A Conservation Journal, Autumn 2004 Issue 48.
Masterpieces from the Department of Islamic Art in the Metropolitan Museum of Art edited by Maryam Ekhtiar. Via Google Books.
Islamic tilings of the Alhambra Palace: teaching the beauty of mathematics by Raymond F. Tennant. Via

Geometric Patterns in Islamic Art by the Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History.
Islamic Art and Geometric Design by the Metropolitan Museum of Art. PDF format.
Plant motifs in Islamic art by the V&A Teachers’ Resource Guide.
Maths and Islamic art & design by the V&A Teachers’ Resource Guide.

Early period embroidered Egyptian textiles

egyptian6thcentemb This is a 6th century textile found in Egypt. It is a plain weave linen embroidered in a regular pattern. The textile is 10 cm by 8 cm. It is currently in the Metroplitan Museum of Art.

egyptian6thcentbw This textile is also from the 6th century & Egypt. It is made from wool & plain woven linen. The Metropolitan Museum of Art says the textile is tapestry woven, but it does look like a style of pattern darning. It is 10.6 cm by 6 cm.

embroidered6thto7th This textile was made between the 6th-7th century. It is made of plain woven linen with wool embroidery and is 14.6 cm by 10 cm. Possibly in running and stem stitch. It is in the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

tapestryembroidered7thto9th This textile is from the 7th-9th century. It is a tapestry woven textile of linen and wool with embroidery. The back of the textile- backtapestrywovenembroidery The textile is 8.3 cm by 10.2 cm. It is in the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

A 10th century Egyptian textile

6thcentredband This textile is linen with a red woolen tapestry woven band (dyed with madder) with linen detail. The band has designs of hearts with a goat or a Sagittary in the middle. The dimensions are 30.5 cm by 31.5 cm. The item is in the Metropolitan Museum of Art. redbanddetail6thcent This is the detail of the tapestry band. The Museum’s page says the textile is a sleeve remnant. However, the reverse of the textile is unusual- reverseredband6thcent This fringing is more expected in a shawl. The reverse details- redbandreverse6thcent Please let me know what you think the textile could be.

Early period Coptic items

This is a Coptic statue, thought to have been made between 600-700 C.E. It is 115cm tall and 49 cm wide. It is currently in the Carmentis On-line Museum. This textile was made earlier than the statue, possibly around 500 C.E. It is 27.5 cm by 17.2cm but there is very little information on the website. It is also in the Carmentis On-line Museum. This textile is 5th century but there is also very little information on the Carmentis On-line Museum. This textile is obviously tapestry woven, possibly using these- (also in the Carmentis On-line Museum) and this- which is another 5th century item- a wooden spindle. Also in the Carmentis On-line Museum.