mid 18th cent. yomud border

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Posted by James Allen on December 23, 1998 at 08:44:55:

I have had numerous posts at home from people truly wanting to understand the white(light grey) dominant perspective. I have chosen a segment from a mid 18th century Yomud carpet that is published in the current edition of Ghereh magazine. I chose this border segment because the subject matter of the designs is so well known. In "PERSEPHONIES QUEST" by OTT ET AL the associaation is drawn between four elements which are part of a world wide mythological association. All the myths have the form, some heavenly entity performs an action which has as its real world correlate , thunder and lightning. This is seen in the context of a god impregnating the earth and the result being the production of a crop of mushrooms, food of the gods. We think the connection is drawn to mushrooms because so many of their spores are microscopic or almost so. The natives could detect no seeds so the hypothesis of god impregnating the earth. Now as I read this account in this very fine book from Princeton University I realized that my theories would predict that a Turkoman rug, really old, should have this myth coded into a design complex. It didn't take me an hour to fine the first example. Many more have been found since. Look at the picture I linked to this post. Read the white first, squint and block out almost all the visual data. Pick out the white forms. Now there is an isolated triangular form,colored. Its saw tooth bottom cuts out two small triangles. See the triangle under the large colored tirangular shape as the head of an eagle. Let your eye connect the head to the triangular body with upswept line(wing). This white line proceeds downward where it turns inward and a sharp "flash" juts off. This occurs in roughly the genitel region of the bird figure. The large colored chevron shape has a flat base and an angular superstructure. This chevron shape could be seen to slam back and forth as the great eagle(spirit) flapped its wings making thunder. All the elements are here. Mapping the elements found on this rug to the myth the border repeat seems to be saying. The great bird flaps its wings and sends thunder and lightning crashing down to the earth. The result is that in this place in a few months a crop of mushrooms we will return to find. The mushroom interdigitated with the heads of the great spirit may relate to the fact that the fly agaric was taken in shamanic rituals to help release the spirit bird within. I truly hope this helps the seekers to see the hidden designs and meanings in classical Turkoman weaving, the best in the world. James Allen

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