Vintage and Antique Persian Rugs

The Persian carpet meaning "to spread" is an essential part of Persian art and culture in Iran. Carpet-weaving is unquestionably one of the most distinguished expressions of Persian culture and art, and dates back to the Persian Empire according to evidence such as the 2500-year-old Pazyryk carpet, dating back to 500 B.C., during the Achaemenid period. The Persians were among the founded carpet weavers of the ancient civilizations, having accomplished a superlative degree of perfection through centuries of creativity and ingenuity.

Persian rugs are made up of a layout and a design which in may include one or a number of motifs varying from historic monuments and Islamic buildings, Shah Abbassi, spirals, all-over, tree of life, weeping willow, garden of paradise, hunting, florals, vase of immortality, Mehrab, geometric, tribal and composites. Most of them have relative designs like curvilinear, rectilinear, flowers, animals and birds in a variety of colors. Persian rugs are typically designed using one of four layouts: all-over, central medallion, compartment and one-sided. Some abstract asymmetrical design can be found but most of these can be designated as one-sided or unidirectional. One general design may serve the entire field or the surface may be covered by a repetitive pattern. In areas using long-established local designs, the rug weaver often works from memory, with the patterns passed on within the family from generation to generation.

One of the appealing aspects of Persian rugs is their warm and soft coloration. The majority of Persian rugs are dyed using plants found locally growing on mountains or farms. Red is a popular color and is used in every shade from crimson through scarlet to soft coral. Blues are also extensively used in Persian carpets, specifically the deep indigo blue that appears so often as the background color. Most of the oriental carpets are made from five basic materials. Wool, cotton, silk, jute and animal hair. There are also some kind of variations of these materials. Wool is the most common material for Persian carpets; however, cotton is frequently used for the foundation of city and mass produced carpets. There are a wide variety in types of wool used for weaving and in some cases even camel hair wool.

Persian Rug History Time Line

  • The Pazyryk carpet: Earliest pile-woven carpet
  • Early fragments
  • Early history: circa 500 BC – 200 AD
  • The Sasanian Empire: 224–651
  • The advent of Islam and the Caliphates: 651–1258
  • Seljuq invasion and Turko-Persian tradition: 1040–1118
  • The Mongol Ilkhanate (1256–1335) and Timurid Empire (1370–1507)
  • The Safavid Period (1501–1722) and the design revolution
  • The Afsharid (1736–1796) and Zand (1750–1796) dynasties
  • The Qajãr dynasty (1789–1925)
  • The Pahlavi dynasty (1925–1979)
  • Modern time

Types of Persian Rugs and Carpets: Abadeh, Afghan/Yomut (Turkmen), Ahar, Afshar, Arak, Ardabil, Ardestan, Assadabad rug, Bakhtiari, Balouch, Bijar, Birjand, Borujerd, Chelaberd, Chodor, Dorokhsh, Farahan, Ferdos, Ghayen, Gonabad, Gonbad Ghaboos, Gorgan, Herat, Heriz (Hariz), Isfahan, Joshghan, Jozan, Kashan, Kashmar, Kerman, Lilian, Mahan, Mahalat, Maku, Mamasani, Marand, Mashhad, Mazlaghan, Meshkin Shahr, Moshk Abad, Mood, Nain, Nishaboor, Rafsanjan, Ravar, Saraband, Sarab, Saraband, Sarukh, Semnan, Sha Savan, Shahre Kord, Shiraz, Shahr Reza, Qazvin, Qom, Tabriz, Tehran, Torghabeh, Varamin, Yalameh, Yazd, Zanjan, Zabol