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Old November 5th, 2017, 10:55 PM   #10
Rich Larkin
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Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Massachusetts
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Hi Chuck,

Tough act to follow there with Martin's posts. I won't try to embellish any of that commentary. Anyway, if
  • the last image posted is 18th Century, and
  • the kush motif is raised arms, not birds,
I got off the bus at the wrong stop.

I will say something about your ensi. Based on the size, the mustard-y yellow, and subtle other factors relating finish, I would be inclined to place it later rather than earlier. Not necessarily very late, though. I agree with Martin the plainweave flat end finish (if it had that) argues for greater age. After 1900, I would think. Though I agree open space around designs generally supports greater age, I am not so sure the generous space around the kush motifs exemplifies the principle. I am more inclined to see the space as a function of the relatively great width and the weaver's decision to stick with a single kush device in each panel.

Regarding that yellow, I think it appears in a wide range of woven products from the greater Afghanistan area at some historical point. I won't attempt to identify the time it happened. I don't necessarily consider it synthetic, either. My understanding is there are many ways and natural sources for yellow. I think it is very possible the mustard shade of the color became widely available from some popular dyeing center in the region somewhere along the line, resulting in its appearance in many rugs. That rationale doesn't necessitate a conclusion of synthetic process in my opinion.

Rich
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