End treatment Upper kilim end 41/2 ", lower kilim end 5 1/2"
A few tassels remain on the upper right corner, so it had a short ivory web finish and knotted tassels at the upper extremity; owning to the length of extant warps, I suspect the lower warp threads were left loose.
Warp Ivory wool
Weft Natural brown wool, two shots
Sides Four cord Goat hair selvedge
Knot Asymmetric open left,
6.5 h x 8 v = 52 Kpsi.
Dk Brown purple
Of special interest is the Plum color, which really "makes" the rug, and this especially rich and ambiguous Dk Bluegreen. Depending upon the colors to which it is adjacent, the eye registers this Bluegreen as being either a blue or a green.
It was during a recent outing to downtown Washington D.C., that I encountered this belouch rug in the custody of one of the usual suspects.
It was dirty, matted, folded into quarter and stacked, along with other various rugs and rug pieces, into the corner of a room overflowing with assorted old furniture, lamps chairs, knick nacks, etc.. In other words, your typical antique/junk shop.The rug looked pretty rough, but for the price was worth the gamble, so bought and took it home (well, after stopping off at Cork for a glass of Cabernet and a sampling of their charcuterie selection).
The next day I took it outside and spead it out on the driveway. Just a little too big for the bath tub at 38" x 65". I was curious to see what it would look like in less than sodden condition, as it sported a certain plum purple color that was readily apparent through the dirt. While it was unseasonably warm for this time of year here in the states, it was still rather cool outside, so I was to have to wait untill the next to see my rug in it's dry condition.
The field does appear to be real Camel hair, and not just camel colored wool as so often encountered. Also, the camel field sports a satisfying large scale "tree of life" type design, and a row of filler-type devices on either side of the field.
For myself, the kilim ends are one of the most endearing qualities which this rug possess, and play an important role in the overall effect of the colors in this weaving. There is a dichotomy in the use of color in this rug, emphasized by the series of four photographs above, two of the upper and lower halves, and two of upper and lower end details, which illustrate the fact that the color use in the upper and lower half of the rug differ. This color use is continued (or in the case of the lower half, begun) into the kelim ends.
A couple of interesting things to be seen here in this photograph. Notice how the "maimana" device has morphed into an (ikat inspired?) "X" - and how corroded is the purple/brown wool by which it is surrounded. To the far right we see a wide four cord selvedge, and to it's left a particularly handsome version of the barber pole border, which continues around the entire perimiter of the rug. We can also see, near side by side, the meander borders which delineate the boundaries of the Mainana border, acting as guard stripes. We see the point where this color shift begins, where this rich and beautiful purple, which inhabits the interior of the "white" meander border, shifts to black, and as continued in the lower half of the rug. This powerful plum color is also to be found in the Mainmana element directly below the "X" , and is also the predominant color of the upper kelim end.
This "Maimana" border, has a couple of interesting qualities, not the least of which is it's resemblance to the pattern found in flatwoven Maimana kelims, hence the moniker. One is left with the impression that the weaver was familiar with the products of Maimana - a city in Northern Afghanistan inhabitated by people of Uzbek origin. Also, notice that the camel field is off center, and that the Maimana border is wider on the right side of the rug than the left.
As a final note, there just a few areas of purple silk highlight to be found in this rug. If you direct your attention to the first "tree trunk" of the tree of life element in the next image, following up from the base to where it exits the photo, this second to last decorative band is of purple silk, as with the second and fourth "trunks" in the photograph.