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Question:

What do you know about Armenian rug history?

What do you know about Armenian rug history?

Answer:

Armenians are the earliest known weavers of oriental rugs. Ulrich Schurmann, a reknowned expert on oriental rugs, believes that the Pazyryk rug, the world's oldest known rug (5th cent. B.C.), can be attributed to the late Urartians, or early Armenians, based on the rug's structure, design, and motifs [1]. Marco Polo and Herodotus are among the many observers and historians who recognized the beauty of Armenian rugs. They noted the rugs' vivid red color which was derived from a dye made from an insect called ordan (Arabic kirmiz), found in the Mount Ararat valley. The Armenian city of Artashat was famous for its ordan dye and was referred to as the city of the color red by the Arab historian Yaqut [1]. It is also theorized that the word carpet, which Europeans used to refer to oriental rugs, is derived from the Armenian word kapert, meaning woven cloth. The Crusaders, many of whom passed through Armenia, most likely brought this term back to the West. Also, according to Arabic historical sources, the Middle Eastern word for rug, khali or gali, is an abbreviation of Kalikala, the Arabic name of the Armenian city Karnoy Kaghak. This city, strategically located on the route to the Black Sea port of Trabizond between Persia and Europe, was famous for its Armenian rugs which were prized by the Arabs.
Aug 23, 2017
Sera, my understanding is that you already know about this, just want to inform people , which is very nice... but I asked my teacher and he gave me the following Sources: Weavers, Merchants, and Kings. The Inscribed Rugs of Armenia, by Dr. Lucy Der Manuelian and Dr. Murray L. Eiland, Kimbell Art Museum, Fort Worth, 1984. Rugs of Armenian, Their History and Art, by H. M. Raphaelian, Anatol Sivas Publishers, New Rochelle, New York, 1960. Oriental Rugs and The Stories They Tell by Arthur T. Gregorian, 1967, Nimrod Press, Boston. Oriental Rugs, by Murray L. Eiland, Expanded Edition, New York Graphic Society, Boston, 1976. The Color Treasury of Oriental Rugs, by Stefan Milhofer, 1971. Caucasian Rug Images found at earth.oconnell.net/RugNotes/Caucasia.htm
Aug 23, 2017
I know very little beyond what is shown in showrooms and on Antiques Roadshow. Mostly they have Persian carpets, and not that much on Armenian.
Aug 23, 2017

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