Double niche ‘Transylvanian’ carpet
The National Museum of Art of Romania
Late 17th–early 18th century
Wool; knotted; symmetrical knot
H: 180cm, W: 125cm; knot density ver. 33/dm; hor. 29/dm; 957/dm2
The term “Transylvanian” rug refers to 17th- and 18th-century rugs preserved in large numbers in Transylvanian Saxon churches, and once considered to have been made in Transylvania, whereas in fact they were produced in western Anatolia. Certain Transylvanian rugs have a mihrab design, typical of prayer rugs; others, such as the present one, feature two opposing arches. The shape of this double niche and its undecorated beige ground are characteristic of later “Transylvanian” rugs, while the border of alternating polygonal cartouches and octagons can also be found in earlier examples. Several technical imperfections such as the inaccurate rendering of space, which accounts for the incomplete motifs in the main border, and the lack of left–right symmetry though indicative of a modest workshop, retain a certain appealing charm.
Purchased from the owner
Dunca, Mircea, De la mihrab la grădina paradisului, Bucharest: Muzeul Național de Artă al României, 2006: cat. 11.
Mircea Dunca "Double niche ‘Transylvanian’ carpet" [db_in_citation_dca] 2019. http://carpets.museumwnf.org/database_item.php?itemId=object;DCA;rm;Mus31;6;en
Prepared by: Mircea Dunca
Translation by: Victoria Gheorghita
Translation copyedited by: Mandi Gomez
MWNF Working Number: RO1_006