"Senneh" Prayer Rug

Object Name: Carpet

Date: late 18th–early 19th century

Geography: Attributed to Northwestern Iran, Sanandaj

Medium: Cotton (warp), wool (weft); tapestry-woven

Dimensions: Rug: L. 64 1/2 in. (163.8 cm)
W. 48 1/4 in. (122.5 cm)

Classification: Textiles-Rugs

Credit Line: Gift of Joseph V. McMullan, 1970

Accession Number: 1970.302.8

Not on view
This tapestry-woven prayer rug is an example of the fine production of Sanandaj, a center in the province of Kurdistan in northwestern Iran. The tapestry technique (kilim) makes it lighter and more fragile than a knotted pile rug, and such objects were often used as decorative wall hangings. The change of colors in the densely patterned rows of flowers enlivens the otherwise simple composition of an arched mihrab, or prayer niche, filled with flowers within and outside the niche.
Joseph V. McMullan, New York (by 1965–70; gifted to MMA)
The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "The Making of a Collection," October 24, 2011–February 26, 2012, no catalogue.

New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Fifty Years of Collecting Islamic Art," September 23, 2013–January 26, 2014, no catalogue.

"Catalogue of an exhibition held at the] Hayward Gallery, London, 19 October–10 December 1972." In Islamic Carpets from the Joseph V. McMullan Collection. London: Arts Council of Great Britain, 1972. no. 35, p. 41.

McMullan, Joseph V., and Ernst J. Grube. Islamic Carpets. New York: Near Eastern Art Research Center, 1965. no. 35, pp. 148-149, ill. fig. 35 (color).

Dimand, Maurice S., and Jean Mailey. Oriental Rugs in the Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1973. pp. 92-93, ill. fig. 126 (b/w).

Denny, Walter B. How to Read Islamic Carpets. New Haven and London: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 2014. pp. 44-45, ill. fig. 31 (color).