Wednesday 26 August 2020

19th Century Indian Carpets and their Prototypes






 Although contemporary sources abound,we know little about the true origins of these carpets.

They nevertheless represent the last gasp of a tradition,and the beginning of its industrialisation.Far-sighted men in the Indian Jail system and the newly founded Art Institutes recognised the artistic and financial possibilities inherent in India`s nascent carpet industry and began actively promoting these interests after the first International Exhibition of 1862.Demand outstripped supply and by 1900 large factories had been established in Agra,Jaipur,Mirzapour and elsewhere,with a corresponding and unavoidable loss of quality.The Jails were in an advantageous position due to their supply of virtually cost-free workers.Lifers and long-term prisoners were preferred as trainees for obvious reasons.Conditions in the prison workshops were said to have been superior to those in the regular industry.The Indian carpet-makers` predilection for the Red Ground Floral design can be  be partially explained by the availability of genuine old examples.The Maharajah of Jaipur lent examples for reproduction to the Yeroda Jail,and eventually set up his own workshop.In Asia,the Jaipur carpet collection is  second only to that of Istanbul. When the Shahbanu of Iran set about establishing a carpet museum in Tehran,examples of such carpets had to be purchased on the open market(or from the Rockefellers)as no such examples seem to have survived in Iran.Yet that alone cannot account for the prevalence of the Indo-Persian design and its extremely accomplished execution.It must surely have been orchestrated by a group of talented Ustads on the Indian sub-continent, who ensured the continuation of a carpet style once created somewhere between Herat and Lahore.

 India 19th Century-Sothebys 13.9.1995-177

1A-Deccan prayer Pap 1831-Hali 118-2001-94.The earliest dated 19th Century Indian Carpet,with a design influenced by Caucasian prayer rugs.We would know more if the inscription were to be fully translated.

2-India Museum transfer 1879-VAM 05306.This woolen fragment and the following three silk carpets are anchor pieces as they have been at the VAM(Victoria & Albert Museum) in London since 1879.Some of them are known to have entered the India Museum in 1855.  

3)VAM since 1879,silk.Gabbeh-style,with an inscription bearing the word "Jail"

3A)VAM 0741,since 1879,silk.A remarkable Deccan carpet showing 18th century Caucasian influence.

3B) VAM since 1879,silk

4)Windsor castle 1894.Woven for Windsor Castle,and seen on the loom in 1893.Probably the world`s largest Indian carpet.

4A)Published in Robinson`s second catalogue,1893.

5)Thana Jail 1897.Sothebys 20.10.1993-151.

6-Agra 1903-Hali 88-1996-Phillips 72

7-Jaipur Jail-Gans-Ruedin-269.From the workshop of the Maharajah of Jaipur,circa 1930.

8-A copy of the VAM`s Cairene carpet,which entered the Museum in 1899;or of the Berlin carpet,which was published by von Scala et al,in 1908.

9-Center: at the Joseph Fell auction in 2011,although it had formerly appeared at Sothebys in 1993.More information:Cairene Carpets

10-MAK,Vienna, Cairene Quatrefoil style.More info at the above link.

11-The VAM`s Ushak in Cairene style.

12-Agra Sothebys 1.11.2016-72.A demonstration of the decorative power such an item can unfold in the right environment.

13-Large medallion Ushak designs-not the best template for an Indian copy

14-Indian Star Ushaks.
15-Indian copies of Turkish rugs(Ghiordes,Ladik and Mudjur)

16-Dragon carpet copies were mostly derived from the Berlin Graf example,destroyed in WWII,and published in Sarre-Trenkwald,1926-28.

17. Published by Andrews in his 1905-06 monograph,this is a member of a small Harshang design group with an "Indian" style flower border.Other examples were in the Ballard Collection(Breck-Morris 7),at Sothebys on 14 October 1972,lot 116,and with Calatchi and Hirth.Few versions of the Harshang design were attempted in 19th century India.Probably NW Persia.

18-Harshang designs.


20-The flower-head design is attributed to Senneh,but was employed elsewhere in Iran.

21-Two Indian copies.

22-More Indian copies.

23.Based on the Bidjar Garrus arabesque design.
24.In Iran this design was only woven on a blue ground.

25-"Laristan" carpets,a brand name for items from Lahore,usually with an Indo-Persian design.
26-Indo-Persian Sarouks.

27-An Indian copy of a Persian copy of an Indian carpet.With Bausback.

28-a pastiche of the later Kirman Baroque style.Finarte 1995.


30-A number of Jail carpets were woven as imitation Baluch Timuris,all much larger than the originals and on a cotton foundation.

31-Published by Galerie Erturk,and attributed to Srinagar.A copy of a Saryk choval,woven sideways.127 x 269 cms.

32-Saryk ensi,Netherhamptons Auction.

33-The right-hand piece is made entirely of cotton(not inappropriate for a Saryk)

34-India-Christies-12.12.2006-107.An Indo-Chinese carpet with frontal-facing dragons.Perhaps the makers had access to an archaic red-ground carpet.
35-with minute differences in the corner solutions.Sothebys and Nagel.

36-Chinese designs possibly taken from the Tiffany catalogues.
37-Right:an antique carpet in the Textile Museum,first published in a 1917 Benguiat catalogue.The other two items are Indian copies.

38-A variation on the "100 Antiques" design.

39-Chinese floral medallion style.

40-Quite a lot of East Turkestan rugs found their way to Northern India.Andrews illustrated a number in his monograph,and attributed them erroneously to India itself,from whence they were collected.The medallion carpets are a fair pastiche of the later Kansu style.It may be that many East Turkestan carpets in a degenerate style will have to be reattributed one day- to India.
41.A rare double-sided Agra sold at Christies London on 10.4.2008(135)for 3,500 GBP. 124 x 178 cms.

42-A copy of the Isidore Gunst Millesfleur prayer rug now in the David Collection,Copenhagen,and first published in the 1908 supplement to the Wienerwerk.Offered by the American Company Damoka in Oriental Rug Review.
43-A copy of the Indian prayer carpet in the MAK,Vienna.For a further discussion,see plates 166 at-

44-Amritsar R&B 12.11.1994-117.
45-Two copies of the Paravicini carpet-left,in silk;middle,silk:now Khalili collection;published by Martin in 1908,and in the Munich 1910 catalogue;later with Benguiat.

46-Published by Gombos in 1980,Hungarian Collection.Unlikely to be a very old rug;no good illustration available.

47-Offered by the Belgian dealer N.Vrouyr as Sivas;tech info not available;possibly an Indian copy.

48-Benjamin Altman`s magnificent pashmina rug has been the subject of a number of copies since its publication in Sarre-Trenkwald(1926)It entered the MET in 1913,where it can now be viewed in de-constructed condition.
49-Based on a fragment which entered the VAM in 1930.Two other pieces are in the LA County Museum and the Keir Collection.

50-Left:published by Eskenazi,il Tappeto 348,size 155 x 250.The sickle-leaf as a disintegrated lattice.Right:published in Andrews` monograph,a medallion lattice,probably Warangal/Deccan.

51.The 18th century carpet on the right employs a border later used in the Ferahan area for Milles Fleurs prayer rugs.Very few diagonal design later Mughal carpets are known(some 5 here on record)Neither of these carpets could sell at auction,the older piece appearing twice at Christies.

52-Lahore.At Manzoni on 12.5.1982(97)Presumably a later rug,although classified as 18th century.Difficult to classify.
53-Lahore Sothebys 2.5.2001-167.No 18th century Milles Fleurs medallion rug was ever as elegant as this...perhaps Kashmir.

54-A carpet based on Kendrick`s reconstruction of the Chihil Sutun carpet;and a wagireh(or fragment) from such a piece.The Christies item went unsold.
55-A design adapted from a border strip of the Chihil Sutun carpet,once with Benguiat.At Sothebys on 7 November 2017,lot 21.

56-VAM.Arguably the most splendid of all Deccan carpets.
57- The Deccanisation of the Indian rug has been in full swing since the 1970`s.L-R clockwise:Published Kamada,569;Eskenazi il Tappeto 349;Kamada 570(Toyama)Walker,Flowers(Kanko-Boko)

58-L:On its first appearance at Sothebys in 1994 the left rug went unsold against an estimate of  6,000-9,000 GBP,but later sold at Sothebys in 1998  for 40,000 GBP.This assemblage of fragments is clearly based on a textile design,as mentioned in Hali 102-128.The ground colour is white cotton,the foundation,silk.Attributed to Golconda,Deccan.104 x 182 cms.R:The small carpet on the right entered the VAM in 1924.Shawl influence,with a poignant wistful look.70 x 153 cms.

59-Three rugs belonging to Brigitte Scheunemann`s group,the "Namenlose Gattung"all located in Japan,with Scheunemann`s original reconstruction from 17th century Dutch paintings(lower left)See Onno Ydema.
60-A rug in the Tsuki-Boko,Japan,followed by the Bernheimer Animal-Medallion carpet with its Tanjore style medallion(Bernheimer Sale Christies 1996,lot 166) and a third piece also in Japan(Hika-Boko)

61-L: A rug dated by Kamada to before 1763.A strange mixture of awkward shapes and elegant vines.See Hali 148-107.R: Another curiosity sold at the Kevorkian sale in 1969(1-11)and again at Sothebys London on 3 November 2015,lot 92,for 43,750 GBP.Although geometric in style it successfully conveys an arabesque feel.The border is distantly related to Peter Pap`s prayer rug in plate 1A.252 x 460 cms.APG Hali 186-145. 
62-Deccan Christies 6.4.06-166.Surely a very old palmette rug,perhaps from the Deccan,unsold  at Christies in 2006.A similar carpet faired no better at the same venue on 15 October 1998,lot 230.The world finally awoke on 8 April 2014 at Christies London when this splendid carpet  sold for 27,500 GBP.The size is more likely to indicate a Lahore origin,though.456 x 869 cms.

63-A spiral-vine Deccan carpet with Aaron Nejad in London.

64-Another three Deccani carpets in Japan:L-R:Kamada pl.373,before 1757;Kamada 219,with cartouche border;Kamada 357,also published in Hali 77-92.

65-Deccan RGF.Two examples of Deccani rugs in the RGF style(Red Ground Floral)imitating the grand old Indo-Persian design.Left:sold,with a handmade Japanese box,at Christies on 16 April 2007,lot 49,for 12,000 GBP. 137 x 248 cms.See Hali 152-129.Right:Published in Woven Flowers of the Silk Roads,plate 44.Whereabouts unknown. 140 x 256 cms.

66-Left:said to have been mentioned in documents from 1814(?) and kept in the Gion Matsuri,Kyoto. 126 x 243 cms.Right: Also taken to be 18th century.Kept at the Kita-Kannon-yama Association in Kyoto. 127 x 319 cms. 

67-Invariably,before and after photos show a carpet in poor and good condition.Here the reverse is true:the photo on the left shows a rug sold at Christies on 14 October 1999,lot 147,for $17,110.The worn rug to the right is the same piece,as it re-surfaced some 12 years later at Bonhams on 25 April 2012,lot 53.Needless to say,it went unsold.Either it had been remorselessly abused in the meantime,or some purist had removed a large repair.

68-Two further examples from the group with Rosette and Sickle Leaf border.The first sold at Christies New York on 24 November 2009,lot 340,for $ 40,000.The second was illustrated by Kamada,illustration 161,and dated by her to probably before 1740.

69-A shrub carpet in the VAM,IS 0770,of which no photo exists on their website.Vaguely reminiscent of the Khotan Besh-Gul design. 139 x 179 cms.

70-An intruiging fragment published by Marcuson & Hall,depicting allover Botehs in a South Persian style.

71-Agra Sothebys Islamic 13.4.1988-83.A remarkably good copy of the Emperor`s carpet.
72-The Emperor`s carpet flanked by two copies.

73-A fragment in the Yerkes Collection was used to weave the rug on the left.

74-Border detail of the Vienna Hunting Carpet.
75-Clearly a lost cause,but nevertheless two valiant attempts at the great Hunting Carpet in Vienna.

76-Two interpretations of the Stockholm Hunting Carpet,in wool.
77-A copy of the Rothschild/Boston Hunting Carpet.

78-A scaled down version of the Poldi Pezzoli Hunting Carpet.

79- This Animal Medallion carpet was the starting point for a number of replicas.It is certainly not the oldest,and Yerkes himself was quite disdainful of it.The question could also be asked as to whether it is in fact a Persian rug.
80 On the left the Yerkes original,flanked by an iconic fragment published by Gans-Ruedin,which appeared both before and after publication at Sothebys.

81-A carpet from the Phoebe A. Hearst Collection,cut through the middle,published 1917
82--Rothschild/Widener /Yerkes.Two earlier and much superior examples alongside the Yerkes.

83. Either a border fragment or wagireh runner,Indian,next to a fragment from the mother of all whiteground strapwork borders-more info here:-


85-More copies of the Yerkes carpet.

86.The Paris-Cracow carpet.A necessary simplification.
87-The Williams Tree-Paris Cracow

88-Animal carpet Strap border.Three carpets from a serial production,in a mock classical style.

89-Hendley IV-XCIX.Such a carpet as in the preceeding illustration, was published by Hendley in 1905.It is impossible to ascertain whether the Jaipur carpet is an original or a copy.

90.Budapest-Bausback.A 17th century fragment in Budapest and a fragment from a 19th century Indian carpet show the later item has lost none of the vigour associated with the genre.Indian animal carpets are markedly more playful than their Persian counterparts,being more occupied with the Spiritual Chase than the combative Safavids.
91-Markarian style. A rectangular shaped item with undulating strapwork border;the Bausback fragment(center);a related carpet now in Doha(bottom left);and a Persian variant(right).

92-Markarian style.
93.The Schwartzenberg carpet-Wiener Werk illustration.



96-With Parviz Nemati




100-The Sangusko Carpet.In 1921 Carl Meyer-Pünter published a volume of reproductions of classical carpets,presumably orchestrated by the carpet firm of Meyer-Müller in Zürich.They are said to have been woven in "Central Asia",but reading between the lines were likely made in India,specifically Kashmir.The workmanship is of a high order,as can be seen in this version of the Paris Sanguszko carpet(right).Writing about the MMK exhibition in Munich,1910,Meyer-Pünter describes how all the leading European Carpet houses sent emissaries to copy the carpets in situ,for further reproduction.The Paris Sanguszko was published first in colour in the 1908 supplement to the Wienerwerk,but even the excellent repro would not have sufficed to facilitate such an exact copy.Someone must have copied it directly onto paper.The copies  have a wooden, pedantic quality to them.The Sanguszko carpet was presumably inspired by Ghiyath`s velvet,now in Copenhagen,and published by Pope(1039)
101-Indian Sanguszkos.Left:at Christies on 18 December 2001,lot 22.Right:Sothebys 2 April 2004,lot 134.

102-Left: with Robert Mosby,USA.Right: ex-LA County Museum,at Sothebys on 3 June 2005,lot 98.
103-Garden carpets-Turkman influence.Two such carpets have been recorded,featuring a strange mix of Garden Carpet design and diverse Turkmen elements.

104-MET wb-22.100.A Garden carpet in the MET,possibly Deccan.Probably pre-1800.

105.Hendley-Agnelli.First published by Hendley in 1905(right: two photos), this large carpet from the Agnelli/FIAT collection was sold at Sothebys New York on 23 October 2004,lot 139,for $142,400,presumably to someone who felt it was 17th century.  Opinions are divided,and without technical information no conclusion can be arrived at. 424 x 866 cms.

106.More variations on the Emperor`s Carpet.

107-Amritsar -Phillips 8.10.1991-31.A Paradise Park scene based on the Paris-Cracow carpet.The shorter side is the warp direction. 274 x 500 cms.

108.Animal Medallion carpet,Based on the theme of cascading animals,as in the Lyons carpet with strapwork border.

109. Pursuit scenes with Kylins.

110.Once in the possession of Hartley Clarke,renowned Turkmen expert.

11.First published by the 1931 Persian Art Exhibition in London,Strauss Collection.Later with Cittone,and then Mirzakanian.Always catalogued as 17th century,but may be much later.

112-Hali 113-2000-Bolour

 113-Amritsar -Christies Islamic-27.4.1993-312.Depicting three entwined elephants.
114.A group featuring recumbent animals,whose shapes replace palmettes.

115.A group which has been variously attributed to India,Turkey,and Safavid Iran.Some examples were also copied in the Tuduc workshop,as presumably the lower right item.

116-Lahore-Nagels 12.3.1983-2031a.A more ambitious programme from the same group.

117-Sarre/Morgan/Blau Animal carpet.A good copy of the MET`s great animal carpet,featuring Palm Trees-but why?With D.L Blau(right)

118.A replica of the VAM`s animal pursuit carpet,with added Kylin.The wisteria is only ever seen on Indian carpets.At Christies on 11 November 1993,lot 7.Sold for $ 33,810. 264 x 366 cms.

119.Three copies of the MAK Vienna bird and tree carpet,first published in the 1892 Wienerwerk.One of the reproduction Evergreens.

120-Agra Tehran Museum -Taher Sabahi-459.Another charming variation on the Vienna Cranes & Peacocks  carpet

12.Naturally,Ardabils abound in 19th and early 20th century Indian production;doubtless they are still being made somewhere.A particularly devoted attempt was that of the Meyer-Pünter Collection,seen  here with an early illustration of the original from Hopf.

122-A fragment at Sothebys on 12.10.1999-93 shows the customary malapropism with geometricised arabesques in the central medallion.
123.Ardabil copies.These two beauties appeared one after another at Christies in 2013,complete with inscriptions.

124-Amritsar Sothebys 27.4.2005-160

125-Agra Christies 8.10.2009-77.Woven in this direction..
126.Ardabils in flavour of the month-presumably any colour scheme could be ordered.

127.The Berlin and Bouquoy carpets,one destroyed,the other missing.

127a.The Bouquoy carpet,from the Wienerwerk.

128.Indian copies of the Bouquoy carpet.

129.The Chelsea Carpet,VAM,London.

131-India/Tabriz technique Sothebys 3.12.1988-311.Two Chelsea Carpet clones woven in the so-called "Indo-Tabriz" technique,i.e exceptionally precise and finely-knotted.

132-Cartouche Yerkes Mumford XXV.One of a pair divided between New York and Lyons,this piece from the Yerkes Collection eventually entered the MET after its sale by auction in 1910.

133.The Lyons-MET,a design which spawned many copies.
134. The Clam Gallas carpet(lower right) enjoyed great popularity after its publication in the 1892 Wienerwerk.

135-Hadow Kashmir-Sothebys 19.10.1994-134.A miniature version from the Srinagar Hadow factory-this ruglet measures all of 75 x 129 cms!Sold for $46,575 at Sothebys London on 20 October 1993,lot 109.

136.Three more miniatures from the Hadow factory:L-R: Christies 1983,unsold at 14,000 GBP,76 x 107 cms;Sothebys 1993,sold for $ 22,425,79 x 105 cms;Sothebys Islamic 1988,sold for $41,140,81 x 121 cms.
137.Another miniature illustrated by Stanley Reed.

138.The Vienna MAK`s Rothschild medallion carpet and two variations.

139.An Agra at the Dorotheum on 24.9.2013-102.An improvisation on the following three carpets with cascading animals.

140.Medallion Tree.Three Safavid Animal-Medallion carpets,L-R:McMullan,Boston-Morosoni,Doha-Lyons.
141.The Goupil Salting carpet was frequently imitated;here a copy in silk,perhaps the only medium in which a modern copyist could approach the original quality.

142.More interpretations of the Goupil.

143-Lobonow Rostowsky Salting-Wiener Werk.Two versions of a wonderful Salting carpet now in the Hermitage.

144.Another Meyer-Pünter copy of the Salting carpet in the Musee  des Gobelins,published in the 1892 Wienerwerk.

145.Pannwitz-Thyssen.The original was first published in Sarre-Trenkwald,1926-28.

146.With Rothschild and published in the 1892 Wienerwerk,later with Yerkes and Walters.

147-Amritsar Sothebys 12.4.1996-204.An interesting compendium of designs-419 x 947 cms.
148.A copy of the Fletcher Salting prayer rug in the MET.Fewer Indian copies of such rugs exist as were made in Iran.First publication in Sarre-Trenkwald 1926-28.

Add caption

148A.Various Persian and Turkish copies of the Fletcher prayer rug.

149.A silk Keshan rug published in the Wienerwerk,1892.Sold by the Berlin Museum to Gulbenkian to finance the purchase of the Guelph Treasure.

150-Agra Sothebys 18.10.1995-88.A slowly dilating copy of the Gulbenkian.
151.The Mobilier National silk Keshan in Paris,published 1892.

152.A copy of the Widener silk rug in Washington,sold at the Dole Auction on July 13 1978

153.More fantasy silk Keshans with allover medallion design.

154.A truncated version of the Getty Crane carpet.Published in Sarre-Trenkwald,1926-28.Then in the MacKay Collection. It later passed to Getty,and is now a star of the Los Angeles County Museum.Its counterpart was burned to cinders in Berlin at the end of the war,and was missing the corner spandrels with houris.

155-V&A frag-Nazmiyal.An animal-medallion fragment in the VAM,reconstructed with fantasy strapwork border.

156-Kafaroff-Meyer-Müller fragment-Cleveland.A copy of the Meyer-Müller fragment,itself copied from an iconic Persian velvet,part of which is in Cleveland(center)

157.Two carpets in the portentous King Umberto Polonaise style.

158.A Polonaise style carpet modelled on the Rockefeller example now in the MET.Another Sarre-Trenkwald piece.

159-Polonaise arabesque medallion.Three Indian examples in the Polonaise mode.
160-Polonaise trefoil border.

161.Based on the Kevorkian carpet now in the MET.

162.Two copies of the MAK `s NW Persian sickle-leaf rug,first published 1892.

163.Yet again a copy from Sarre-Trenkwald, of the sickle-leaf carpet in Vienna.

164.The Williams Tree carpet in Philadelphia was published by Martin in 1908,Valentiner 1911,and Sarre-Trenkwald.
165.An unusual Persian prayer kilim with a similar border to the Williams Tree carpet.

166.Left: Christies 1999 & Sothebys 2000.Right: Christies 2002.

167-MAK-Ryksmuseum.A pair once thought to be Kirman Vase carpets but lately attributed-by Christine Klose-to Khorasan.

168-Khorasan Vase Type.Published 1892,the Vienna carpet rapidly developed  progeny.Left: Gans-Ruedin,Indian Carpets 264.Middle: Sothebys 3 December 1988,lot 298.Sold for $ 41,800. 360 x 475 cms.Right: Sothebys 6 April 2011,lot 468. 

169.The most commonly adopted design was that of the Classic Indo-Persian with "in-and-out Palmettes"Few examples approach anything like the quality of the originals,although a piece from Moshe Tabibnia does.Until one looks closely at the field and notices the plump,bird-like leaves.Nevertheless BOT(best-of-type)


171-Agra Beauvais VII-19.Sonorous,and with the severe beauty of an original.

172-Agra -Sothebys Islamic 17.10.1984-66.Left: a vast carpet at Sothebys in 1984 and 1995,previously published in "Jail Birds" 656 x 994 cms.Right:sold at Christies New York on 17 December 2003,lot 60,for $147,500. 434 x 734 cms.

173(ditto).A very large carpet published in Jail Birds and later at Sothebys.

174.A relaxed,open style.
175.Four Agras with a more dense,packed style.

176.The Wrightsman carpet, sold at Sothebys New York on 28 April 2010,lot 174,for $242,500. 340 x 427 cms.Green ground border.
177.This is an interesting carpet as it was acquired by the Berlin Museum from a Swiss agent in 1961 as a 17th century example,but was  revealed by Friedrich Spuhler to be a later copy,although it is now presumably antique.Colours were analysed and found to be Chrome and Acid dyes.Warp is Z7S.Erdmann was still praising the piece in 1966,in "700 Years",plate 15.Presumably Indian,around 1900.

178.With a colour change(the light blue border) one sees how the designs gradually depart from the original.

179.Light olive borders.

180.There are few blue-ground RGF`s in the antique style, so this is a radical departure from the norm.
181-McMullan Dearborn V&A.The grand McMullan carpet is a genuinely old blue-ground example(as is the Burnay carpet in Lisbon)Other Strap-work borders can be seen on the Dearborn carpet(center) and an example in the VAM(right).

182.A group with Cartouche borders and increasing signs of decadence.
183.Such pieces often display bird depictions in the field.

184-Cartouche border without birds.

185-arabesque leaf.Right and lower left:Sold at Christies London on 11 November 1993,lot 106,for 20,700 GBP.Hali was surprised at the result,but failed to realise the carpet had been published by both Hendley (LXIX) and Martin(175)Left,Upper:an Agra sold at Sothebys on 3 Jine 2005,lot 137.

186-Indo Persian-Sothebys Islamic 15.10.1985-774.An ornate example in classic style.
187-Palmette sickle-leaf,dark green border.

188.In this group the palmettes have been subordinated to the sickle-leaves.

189-Toms Collection.This is the signature treatment which appears in the borders of the "Horse-Corner" Group.

190-Horse Corner Group.

191-Horse corner simple type.

192-Horse Corner Long Rugs.

193-Horse Corner type.These lack the signature animals in the border.

194.Best of type medallion carpet,published in "Jail Birds"(8)

195-The Lehman Medallion Carpet

196-196-Feathered Medallion type.The medallions sprouting feathery leaves.

197-Medallions with various ground colours.
19.Thick sickle-leaves I.
199.Thick sickle-leaves II.
200-Set of four samplers published in Jail Birds.


201-Agra mat,with Owen Parry.

202.4-Lotus blue and white.

203.4-lotus Angular Cloudband.

204.4-lotus angular cloudband with cartouche border.
205-Agra Sothebys 14.12.1995-254.An immaculate Red and Gold piece. 

206-Floral Palmette border.A group with a more complex palmette border style.

207-red ground I.The Final Dissolution of this design.

208-red ground II.

209-red ground III.

210-blue ground I.

211-blue ground II.

212-olive ground.

213-white ground.Indian Zieglers.

214(cotton rugs)

215-RGF cloudbands.


217-Large simple design I.
218-Large simple design II.

219-APG Sothebys 1998-Hali 102.Complex Sickle-Leaf carpets.

220-Blue Ground Sickle-Leaf.

221-Sothebys 2004 & Bonhams 2009.Simplified spacious Sickle-Leaf design.

222-Red ground.Complex Indo-Persian RGFs with pronounced Spiral-Vines.
223-The same on a blue ground.

224-More Spiralranken on light ground colours.

225-Plump Rinceaus I.A group with large-leaf Rinceaus seems to be an invention of the Indian designers,or their British overseers.It is presented fully in the next pages as it seems not to have appeared before on anyone`s radar.

226-Plump Rinceaus II.

227-Plump Rinceaus III.The Leaf forms also appear as border decoration.

228-Plump Rinceaus IV.

229-Plump Rinceaus V.

230-Allover Plump Rinceaus.They also appear as border and field design.

231-Ginzky-Martin-Von Scala-V&A Morris.Genuinely old Vase Carpets published in the earliest literature,which would have been available to Western manufacturers.

232-Sarre-Hendley Vase carpets.

233-Blue Ground Vase Carpets with Cairene Border.

234-Blue Ground Vase Carpets with flower petal border.
235-Blue Ground Vase Carpets with Cairene Border.

236-Blue Ground Vase Carpets with Tree Border.

237-Agra sampler V&A-Beattie,Oriental Art 1977-462.

239-Harris 1908.

241-Yellow lattice medallion frags.A common Vase design in 19th century India actually derived from one carpet cut into many pieces,gathered here for the first time.

242-Vase lattice yellow.

243-Vase lattice medallion blue red ochre.

244-Vase red ground I.
245-Vase redground II.

246-Vase gold  and red.

Two fragments from the only known white ground antique Vase carpet in classic style. MAK and Textile Museum.

249-MAK white arabesque strap border II.
250-MAK whiteground Vase-flask-rosette border.With the "Pilgrim`s Flask" design in field and border.

251-MAK whiteground-floral strap form.
252-Berlin/Baltimore not mirrored.

253-Berlin Schlossmuseum Vase carpet style, I

254-Berlin Schlossmuseum Vase carpet style, II.

255-Berlin Baltimore  mirrored.  

These two carpets form a matching pair.The left-hand example was in the Schlossmuseum,Berlin,until 1945,when it was stored in the Friedrichshain Anti-Aircraft tower.It is said to have been destroyed by fire,although this has never been confirmed.

The carpet on the right had been in the Baltimore Museum of Fine Arts and went twice to auction before being sold at Christies on 7 April 1990,lot 78,for $82,500.On its first appearance at Sothebys the carpet went unsold,and was the subject of an extensive analysis by C.G Ellis in Oriental Rug Review 8-3.Ellis had contacted Jens Kröger from the Berlin Museum,who refuted Sothebys assertion that the Baltimore carpet was in fact the Berlin example.This cardinal error was also repeated in Hali 38.In fact,there were two carpets,as Friedrich Sarre clearly indicated in his 1926 Sarre-Trenkwald text.The American example was exhibited first by French and Co, in the Cleveland Museum of Art in 1920.It was afterwards sold to the collector MacKay,before arriving in Baltimore.The repaired areas are already visible in the 1920 American photo.But there are no areas of repair visible in either the 1908 von Scala repro or in Sarre-Trenkwald,although F.Sarre mentions areas of extensive restoration.

Many important works of art from the Schlossmuseum were stored in the Friedrichshain Flak tower,and recently sixty(!)sculptures were discovered in the Pushkin Museum.So there is hope that perhaps the Berlin Vase carpet,a seminal example,did not perish.

Further reading:
Abigail McGowan, Convict Carpets
Yumiko Kamada, Flowers on Floats

Jail Birds-Kennedy Carpets,1987.Preface by Ian Bennett.