MWNF Thematic Galleries

MWNF Portal

 © Musée des beaux-arts de Montréal © Musée des beaux-arts de Montréal © Musée des beaux-arts de Montréal © Musée des beaux-arts de Montréal

Name of Object:

Carpet fragment


Montreal, Quebec, Canada

Holding Museum:

Montreal Museum of Fine Arts


18th century (?)

Type of object:

Carpet fragment

Museum Inventory Number:


Material(s) / Technique(s):

Wool, cotton; asymmetrical knot


655cm x 129cm; knot density 1,920 dm2

Period / Dynasty:

Safavid (1501–1722/36)


East of Iran


The lower corner of this fragment of a high-pile carpet is decorated with a quarter of a lobed medallion. The field is made up of two half-medallions and a mosaic of acanthus leaves, crescents, palmettes, foliated scrolls and flowers. The dark-blue main border is adorned with a series of palmettes surrounded by sickle-shaped leaves. Although it has been restored, the border retains its original design. As the pile of the field has largely been repaired, it is possible that some of the motifs there have been reworked. Therefore, the half-medallion in the upper part of the fragment was originally a half-palmette. The quarter-lobed medallion was patched and painted, and its relation to the initial design remains to be determined. The warp and weft yarns are in cotton. The five-millimetre-high wool knots – the rug has 1,920 of them per square decimetre – are asymmetrical.

How date and origin were established:

Stylistic and comparative analyses

How Object was obtained:


Purchased from Karekin Beshir, New York, in 1950

Selected bibliography:

von Bode, W., and Ernst Kühnel, Antique Rugs from the Near East, Berlin: Klinkhardt & Biermann, 1958: 118–27.
Ittig, Annette, Rêves tissés: tapis d’orient de la collection du Musée des beaux-arts de Montréal / Woven Dreams: Oriental Carpets from the Collection of the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts, Montreal: Montreal Museum of Fine Arts, 1994: 20.

Citation of this web page:

Shirin Shafiee "Carpet fragment"  [db_in_citation_dca]  2019.;DCA;ca;Mus31;7;en

Prepared by: Shirin Shafiee
Copyedited by: Mandi Gomez

MWNF Working Number: CA1_007

On display in

MWNF Galleries



As PDF (including images) As Word (text only)