Posted by louis_dubreuil on 09-26-2006 08:27 AM:

vagireh for identification

Bonjour à tous

This little rug has been presented to me as a Karabagh "saddle" rug. I think this is a vagireh, but I am not sure of the origin.
I have not any datas on the structure of this floral rug.

Amitiés à tous


Posted by R. John Howe on 09-26-2006 10:12 AM:

Louis -

It could well be Caucasian.

There are lots of Caucasian rugs that show European design influences and a particular group that exhibit roses/carnation. See Bennett, pp. 292-294.

The "story" usually is that they were ordered (at least originally) by Russian officers stationed in the Caucasuses.

The Russian elites had a clear admiration for things western from Peter the Great onward. I think French was the frequently the language of upper class parlance. When Bogolyubov published his famous book on Turkmen weavings he did so in French.

I would call this a wagireh too especially because of the drawing of its lower half.


R. John Howe

Posted by Cevat Kanig on 09-26-2006 07:50 PM:

Hi Louis,

It looks to me that it is a Central Anatolian rug has been Woven in Maden/Nigde area.


Cevat Kanig

Posted by R. John Howe on 09-26-2006 08:33 PM:

Hi Cevat -



R. John Howe

Posted by Patrick Weiler on 09-26-2006 08:45 PM:


The rug shows a niche format (upside down in the photo), steeply stepped, which is frequent in Maden/Camardi/Nigde rugs, especially their prayer rugs. The brown of the niche is also characteristic. This piece may show that the previously pre-commercial production was being oriented towards contemporaneous tastes in order to generate market share. Just as the Karabagh rugs went from geometric to floral for the Russian market.

Patrick Weiler

Posted by R. John Howe on 09-26-2006 09:49 PM:

Hi Pat -

Thanks for these indicators.

What is you source? Can you recommend a good book on Turkish pile weaving?

Most of what I see are specialty volumes, but I don't know of a good general book on Turkish pile pieces (that is for less than $600).


R. John Howe

Posted by Cevat Kanig on 09-27-2006 03:04 PM:

Hi John,

Next time, i will try to remember Indicators.


Cevat Kanig

Posted by Patrick Weiler on 10-04-2006 05:51 PM:



I have only found one book that showed rugs from this region. It was in a college library that I visited over 10 years ago. It was a large book and had a very wide range of Turkish pile rugs. I believe it may be this book:

Iten-Maritz TURKISH CARPETS 1977. The world of Anatolian carpets explored and illustrated, from folk art rugs to the looms of the sultans. History, ethnography, social, religious aspects; the main portion contains detailed descriptions of rugs according to the area of production. Hardbound with jacket. 9.75 x 10.25. 357 pages. 180 color illustrations. 10 maps.

I copied this description from The East-West Room web site.
Subsequent to the publishing of this book, the whole cult kilim thing and interest in very old Anatolian flatweaves began and eclipsed any interest in "boring, plain old Turkish rugs". So there has not been much published about them since then.

Patrick Weiler

Posted by R. John Howe on 10-07-2006 08:28 AM:

Thanks, Pat -

There were about 20 copies of this book yesterday on ABE. About $60 at the low end. I ordered one.

I had never heard of it, but it's listed in O'Bannon's bibliography where he describes it briefly and rather non-commitally as:

"A comprehensively illustrated general work on these rugs."

We'll see when it arrives.

The book that is generally recommended on Turkish pile weaving is Bruggeman and Bohmer's "Rugs of the Peasants and Nomads of Anatolia," 1983, which O'Bannon says is "excellent; TechAnal." My understanding is that it currently sells for nearly $600. Too rich for my blood.

Thanks, again,

R. John Howe

Posted by Wendel Swan on 10-07-2006 11:47 AM:

Hi John and all,

Iten-Maritz published some good reference books, Turkish Carpets among them. On page 211 there is a rug that seems to correspond with Louis’ wagireh:

He identifies this as a Fethiye from around 1920 and says of the group: “…before being renamed Fethiye in 1923, the town was called Megri, and carpets of that name were greatly renowned.”

Megri rug are perhaps most commonly called Makri in the rug trade and differ markedly from this example. The old ones generally have two panels in the field and strong and attractive colors. This group, like many others in Turkey, suffered aesthetically from the introduction of synthetic dyes. It is hard for me to think of any category of rugs with such repulsive colors as those produced in Turkey during most of the 20th Century. I had not realized the fate of Makri or Megri weaving.