Antique Rug Symbols: Islimi Arabesque Design
Meanings of Arabesque and Islimi Design in Antique Rugs and Carpets
Islimi Design — Islimi, Also known as arabesque, is often used with major floral elements such as palmettes and the Shah Abassi motif.
Islimi are spiraling floral vines with a graceful curvature that connect major design elements, used in both the field and borders of a carpet. Islimi are seen in the Ardabil Carpet and are found in many styles of Persian rugs, particularly Nain, Isfahan and Mashhad.
Islimi is one of the three major aesthetic pillars of Islamic art, the other two being calligraphy and geometry. The Islimi motif is representative of the idea that there is an underlying order and unity to the natural world.
This idea is symbolized through the unbroken spiraling patterns and seemingly limitless branches connecting Islimi.
Below are several examples of Persian rugs from Nazmiyal which incorporate Islimi Design: