Art/ Collection/ Art Object
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Caftan

Date:
ca. 8th century A.D.
Geography:
Caucasus region
Medium:
Silk, linen, fur
Dimensions:
L. 56 in. (142. 2 cm)
Classification:
Textiles-Costumes
Credit Line:
Harris Brisbane Dick Fund, 1996
Accession Number:
1996.78.1
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 405
The original linen coat (caftan), preserved in part from the neck to the bottom of the hem, is made of finely woven linen. A decorative strip of large-patterned silk is sewn along the exterior and interior edges of the caftan. A minute fragment of lambskin preserved as the caftan's interior attests to its fur lining. The woven patterns on the silk borders of the caftan include motifs such as the rosettes and stylized animal patterns enclosed within beaded roundels, which were widespread in Iranian and Central Asian textiles of the sixth to ninth century. The colors used in the textile include a now-faded dark blue, yellow, red, and white on a dark brown ground. The decorated silk fabrics are a compound twill weave (samite in modern classification) and the body of the garment is plain-weave linen. Two slits running up the back of the caftan make it particularly suitable as a riding costume.
[sold at the Stuttgarter Kunst-Auktionshaus Dr. Fritz Nagel, Stuttgart, on May 7, 1994, no. 18]; acquired by the Museum in 1996, purchased from Rossi & Rossi Ltd., London.
Nagel, Fritz. 1994. Asiatische Kunst. Stuttgart: Stuttgarter Kunst-Auktionshaus, pp. 12-14, no. 18.

Annual Report of the Trustees of the Metropolitan Museum of Art 126 (Jul. 1,1995 - Jun. 30, 1996), p. 7.

Harper, Prudence O. 2001, "A Man's Caftan and Leggings from the North Caucasus of the Eight to Tenth Century: Introduction." Metropolitan Museum Journal 36, pp. 83-84.

Kajitani, Nobuko. 2001. "A Man's Caftan and Leggings from the North Caucasus of the Eight to Tenth Century: A Conservator's Report." Metropolitan Museum Journal 36, pp. 85-124.

Knauer, Elfriede R. 2001. "A Man's Caftan and Leggings from the North Caucasus of the Eight to Tenth Century: A Genealogical Study." Metropolitan Museum Journal 36, pp. 125-154.
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Lower part of caftan

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Collar of a caftan

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