Ardabil Carpet and Persian Tabriz Rugs History

Guide to Fine Persian Tabriz Rugs and the Ardabil Carpet

Ardabil Carpet and Antique Tabriz Rugs – Antique Tabriz rugs are considered to be among the most lovely and desirable of all antique Persian rugs. The city of Tabriz has been a known carpet production center since the Safavid period (1501 to 1722 A.D.), and historical accounts indicate carpets were produced there as early as the Sassanid era (224 to 651 A.D.). Tabriz carpets embody the graceful rendering of motif and precise weaving typical of Safavid works.

Carpets from the Safavid period are felt to represent the pinnacle of woven art in Iran; Tabriz carpets continue this tradition. Tabriz lies in northwestern Iran. It is the capital city of East Azerbaijan Province, 4459 ft. above sea level in a basin in the Sahand Mountains. The northern border of the province abuts the southern boundary of both Armenia and Azerbaijan. Turkey lies not far to the west.

Antique Tabriz Rugs from Persia by nazmiyal
Antique Tabriz Rugs from Persia

The major language spoken is Azeri, emphasizing the cultural links to Azerbaijan and Turkey. Tabriz was the capital under the Ilkhanids during the thirteenth century and again in 1501 under Safavid rule.

Shah Abbas (1587 to 1629), great patron of the arts, established weaving centers throughout Persia, including a royal workshop in Tabriz. The most famous carpet from the Safavid period existing today is the Ardabil Carpet.

Actually woven as a pair, dated to 1539-40, and signed by the weaver, Maqsud, these carpets were created as offerings by Shah Tahmasp to the Shi’ite shrine at Ardabil, east of Tabriz. Several hundred years later, worn and damaged, they were sold to a British merchant in 1890, who used parts of one to restore the other.

The restored, larger carpet is housed in the Victoria and Albert Museum, London; the smaller one, from which pieces were taken, is in the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. Experts believe these carpets were woven in Tabriz over a period of three years.

The Ardabil Carpet is astounding not only for its size, 10.5 by 5 meters, but for the execution of design. This antique rug features a central circular medallion reminiscent of an open lotus, also called sunburst, surrounded by sixteen ovals.

The dark blue field is covered with intricately woven floral designs including vines, tendrils, leaves, palmettes and several types of flowers and buds. It is a balanced work, with a mosque lamp on each long side of the medallion. A poetic couplet, the date and the weaver are inscribed in Arabic in one end. The asymmetrical knot was used, with approximately 304 knots per square inch (kpsi).

Fine Antique Persian Tabriz Rugs by Nazmiyal
Fine Antique Persian Tabriz Rugs

In a sense, there is no “typical” Tabriz carpet, yet the fine execution of design, careful rendering of pattern and balanced use of color define the typical Tabriz work. Several types of design are found on Tabriz carpets: all-over herati motifs, central medallion and also figure carpets that depict forests, animals and people.

Geometric designs are also found. The symmetrical, or Turkish, knot is common in Tabriz weavings, although the asymmetrical knot is sometimes used.

Colors range from multicolored, bright renderings with blue or red fields to subdued palettes in shades of brown, ivory, saffron, and green. Foundations may be cotton, silk or wool with pile in wool or sometimes silk. Tabriz carpets use fine wool, giving luster to the colors and flexibility in handling.

Classic Tabriz carpets feature a central medallion with all-over designs of floral motifs, leaves, tendrils and vines, echoing the stylistic characteristics of the Ardabil Carpets, yet each is a unique work. Herati (mahi) motifs are used as embellishments in medallion carpets, but are also used as a single design in intricately-woven all-over patterns.

Antique Persian Tabriz Rugs by Nazmiyal
Antique Persian Tabriz Rug

After the fall of the Safavid Dynasty, large-scale carpet weaving declined in quality and intensity throughout Persia. A renewed interest in rugs and carpets in the nineteenth century revived the art and Tabriz again became an important production center.

Several workshops in the city featured master designers and weavers who wove their signatures into their creations. Some workshops have continued for generations, including Benlian, PETAG, a German company who established workshops in Tabriz, and Haji Jalili. Other important artists include Seyyed Hossein Mir Mossavar Arzhangi and Abbas Ali Alabaf.

The Elegance of Antique Persian Tabriz Rugs

Antique Tabriz Persian Rugs and Carpets – There are few things in this fine world that say true chic status. Sure, everyone has champagne wishes and caviar dreams. I mean I know I, personally, wake up everyone morning and take a bath in Dom Perignon.

All that being said, when you aren’t jet setting to St. Bart’s for the weekend or going yachting on the Mediterranean, you are spending some hefty time in that luxurious pile of bricks you made home for yourself. What better way to deck out your pad than with a piece of beauteous history with our featured rug, Antique Tabriz rugs.

Antique Tabriz Persian Rugs and Carpets
Antique Tabriz Persian Rugs and Carpets

Nazmiyal Antique Rugs has been at the precipice of bringing the elite and socially-savvy home accents that screams, “I rule the world!” The Tabriz rug adds a sense of elegance to any abode it calls home. Tabriz rugs are some of the world’s best kept secrets in the world of antiquities and high-life social orders.

These puppies are known for the insurmountable quality, detail-oriented weave, and historical background. For centuries, Tabriz rugs have been made with the utmost quality since their inception where Tabriz, located in norther Iran, was one of the earliest capital of the rug world. They boast bragging rights since they are the oldest in terms of production in all of Iran.

Antique Tabriz Persian Rugs and Carpets
Antique Tabriz Persian Rugs and Carpets

Tabriz Persian carpets and their beauty do not only rely upon their rich cultural background, but their design is a force that is untouched by any rug in the industry. Coming an array of colors under our prismatic spectrum, the Tabriz rug may be found in any color whether you’re looking for bold designs and palettes or something softer with lush pastels. Their design elements are bold and full of character work of medallions, floral motifs, or picturesque patterns.

Nothing sets the Tabriz apart from the rest of home accents than their true quality of prestige. So, if you really want to evoke the feeling of running the modern-day world with these antique pieces, get yourself a Tabriz rug. We promise your guests will be envious and enraptured in all the Tabriz rug has to offer.

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