Anhalt carpet, mid–16th century
Cotton warp, silk weft, wool pile, asymmetrically knotted; L. 317 1/2 in., W. 167 in.
Gift of Samuel H. Kress Foundation, 1946 (46.128)
The great medallion carpet on a golden yellow ground, known after the name of its former owner as the Anhalt carpet, was woven in Persia around the middle of the sixteenth century. The multicolored peacocks that punctuate its design of spiraling vines and stylized blossoms link its imagery to Islamic concepts of Paradise. The carpet's remarkable state of preservation and its color, unusual among surviving carpets of this period, add to its stunning visual impact.