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A similar example of this rug with an Armenian inscription is in the collection of Arthur T. Gregorian shown on pg. 172 of “Weavers, Merchants and Kings—The inscribed Rugs of Armenia” by Lucy Der Manuelian and Murray L. Eiland. 

During the 18th and 19th centuries, finely woven rugs (over 400 knots per square inch!) were made in Istanbul, Hereke and Bursa, the old Ottoman capital. It is possible that the rug was originally woven for use in an Armenian church. In the Ottoman Empire, the development of the design of the Islamic prayer rug has obvious roots in Armenian and Greek ecclesiastic art. The arches, pillars, cypress trees, urns and hanging lanterns familiar to us in so many Islamic prayer rugs can be found in Byzantine and Armenian illuminated manuscripts as well as in decorative stone carvings. In this example cypress trees signifying eternity frame a central niche, in which the life force is characterized by a vase of flowers. 

Armenian Bursa Silk Prayer rug Ca 1800

$20,000.00Price

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