Funeral Rug, Prayer Rug

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Posted by Steve Price on November 27, 1998 at 10:41:27:

In Reply to: Ayatlyk posted by Pat Weiler on November 27, 1998 at 10:25:58:

Had dinner yesterday with a large group that inclduded an 84 year old Turkish gentleman visiting relatives in the USA. I showed him the "salatchak", and he immediately said it was a two-person prayer rug from Turkmenistan. Too narrow, I protested. Not at all, he said (through his daughter, our translater). People in mosques kneel very close to each other, and this is the ideal width for two in a crowded mosque. The two rectangular elements at the bottom clinched it for him.

Perhaps this item is beginning to fall into place. Used to cover the dead person's face during a funeral, then passed on to the mosque for prayer rug use. All of this would account for the excellent condition, too. Until a better hypothesis comes along, I'll buy into this one.

Steve Price

: Ayatlyk is a term used to describe a burial or funeral rug. See Oriental Rugs From Atlantic Collections, p. 126, plate 135.
: They were made to cover the dead during the funeral ritual and then left on the graves. They were then "passed over" or donated to the cemetery mosques.
: This may explain the good condition and lack of "baby stains".

: The Ayatlyk in the book is 87x127 cm, similar in size to the one on this board. It is pile-woven, though.

: (I posted this message in response to one by Marvin, but it is embedded in his message thread and if someone thought they had already checked that thread, they would not realize there are more messages attaached. The number beside a message shows how many comments there are attached to that message.)

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