Art/ Collection/ Art Object

Velvet and Silk Carpet

Object Name:
17th century
Attributed to India
Silk, metal-wrapped thread; cut and voided velvet, brocaded
Rug: L. 183 1/2 in. (466.1 cm) W. 103 3/4 in. (263.5 cm)
Credit Line:
Purchase, Joseph Pulitzer Bequest, 1927
Accession Number:
Not on view
For special occasions, Mughal palaces and pavilions were spread with silk hangings, carpets, and embroidered velvets. On one New Year’s Day, for instance, the emperor Jahangir mentioned visiting his vizier and brother‑in‑law Asaf Khan, who had covered the road from the palace with velvets woven with gold and gold brocade. This sumptuous carpet may have been used for such an occasion. Its design is reminiscent of Iranian textiles, but ink inscriptions in Gujarati script on its selvages indicate that the carpet was woven in that state, which was well known for the production of silks, velvets, and cottons.
Royal House of Saxony(from 1683); [ J. Glückselig, Vienna, until 1927; sold to MMA]
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "INDIA !," September 14, 1985, no. 136.

Reath, Nancy Andrews, and Eleanor B. Sachs. Persian Textiles and Their Technique from the Sixth to the Eighteenth Centuries Including a System for General Textile Classification. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1937.

Harari, Ralph, and Richard Ettinghausen. A Survey of Persian Art from Prehistoric Times to the Present, edited by Arthur Upham Pope. Vol. I-VI. London and New York: Oxford University Press, 1938. ill. v. VI, pl. 1068.

Dimand, Maurice S. A Handbook of Muhammadan Art. 2nd rev. and enl. ed. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1944. p. 266, ill. fig. 174 (b/w).

Welch, Stuart Cary. "Art and Culture 1300–1900." In India!. New York: Holt, Rinehart, and Winston, 1985. no. 136, pp. 206-208, ill., p. 207 (black, color detail).

Welch, Stuart Cary. The Islamic World. vol. 11. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1987. pp. 159-161, ill. fig.122 (color).

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