Early 20th Borchelu Carpet

Early 20th Borchelu Carpet
Borchalu Persian Carpet

6 foot 10 inches by 4 foot 11 inch.

This rug was sold to me as a Bidjar. I knew it wasn't because it is single wefted and Bijars are always double wefted but it was obvious it was a really good rug with a meaty handle and thick dense pile. This rug was a bit of a mystery at first for me because I could not remember a rug made like this. Obviously it is not a Malayer or a Lilihan and everything else I tried to match it to seemed wrong. Finally using P. R. J. Ford's book Oriental Carpet Design I identified this rug as a Borchalu. When I hear Borchalu I think of a Borchalu Kazak. But there are there is a people called Borchalu some of who were in the Caucasus and some living near Hamadan. Borchalu rugs are a hard wearing quality carpet that has much in common with a Feraghan Sarouk.

Ford mentioned that the Borchalu were Mongol. That peaked my curiosity. If they are Mongol than I should be able to identify them since Mongols are well documented. Here is what I found:

In about 1179 a young man who would grow up to be Cinggis Qahan (Ghengis Khan) was aided by the son of the Chieftain of the Arulat clan. The young man was Bo'orcu. He became one of Cinggis Qahan's Dorben Kulu'ud (Great Warriors). In the Yuan ch'ao pi-shih, quatrain 205, it is recorded that later in life Cinggis Qahan said "Let Bo'orcu govern the ten thousand of the right hand which take the Altai as pillow." In other words the Qahan gave a proto-tribal unit to a key general. I am certainly no linguist but I translate Borchalu as Bo'orcu Lu or the people of Bo'orcu. The Lu of Bo'orculu as coming from the same root as the Mongol term Ulus which means the land, animals, and people, that a that an IL or tribal group controls. These people became known as the Bo'orculu or people of Bo'orcu. Over the years Bo'orculu becomes Borchalu. So if Ford is correct and I believe he is that the Borchalu are Mongol than they must be descended from the Horde of Bo'orcu.

Borchalu Rug. Persia, early 20th century. 6 foot 10 inches by 4 foot 11 inch.

Structure: Asymmetrical knot open left. 9 knots per horizontal inch and 11 knots per vertical inch. 99 per square inch (1445 per square decimeter) Depressed back.

Yarn Spin: Z.

Warp: Cotton, white.

Weft: Cotton 1 shot, white.

Pile: 2 Wool singles.

Ends: Warp fringe.

Selvages: overcast with blue wool.

Further Notes: Thick meaty handle, very substantial Semi-Antique Rug. Intact, great condition, Great Color, no runs, bleeding, etc...


This is a beautiful rug. It will add considerably to a fine home.

Great Wool, Great Color, Very Durable.This rug should look magnificent for many years to come.