Re: Is This A Prayer Rug?

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Posted by Irwin Kirsch on December 04, 1998 at 17:37:44:

In Reply to: Re: Is This A Prayer Rug? posted by Yon Bard on December 04, 1998 at 14:25:35:

Dear Yon:

Since it has been established that any rug can be used for prayer purposes as long as it is clean and of the proper size, let me put the question of the Karagashli rug that I raised in proper context. Assuming we can categorize all rugs as either secular or prayer (design) rugs, was Ralph Kaffel correct in placing this rug in his outstanding book, containing prayer "design" rugs? My contention is that the Karagashli "arch" in plate 52, whether it be one, two, or 14, is a traditional motiff used in Karagashli secular rugs and the motiff should not be construed as a mihrab. Steve Price has pointed out that the motiff inverted resembles a two headed animal used in many weavings of different regions. The only mihrab shaped symbols that I am aware of in Caucasian weavings are gabled, mainly pentagonal shaped or Akstafa type inverted block shaped U's (commonly found in Belouch prayer designed rugs). When Ralph Kaffel said that Karagashli prayer rugs are extremely rare, he was extremely correct. In fact, they may be nonexistent. I, for one, would still not consider it a prayer designed rug even if it had one mihrab.


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