Guide to Turkmen Rugs & Carpets
As a group we now call them Turkmen Rugs. The old name in common usage was Turkoman Rugs but the trend today is to drop Turkoman rugs in favor of Turkmen rugs because Turkmen is the accepted English translation of the name of the people and their language. Earlier the rugs were called Bukhara or Afghan rugs.
When we wish to identify ethnicity political or geographic names are so fleeting as to be meaningless. Recently one national appraisal exam listed the correct answer for all Turkmen rugs as Russian. Obviously this is so meaningtless as to be ludicrous. A number of years ago Dr. Jon Thompson was highly influential in the move to language names. It gives us a meaningful framework in which to understand the ruigs so following Thompson I use the language names for the rugs.
Therefore Turkmen rug because the weavers are Turkmen who speak one of the dialects of the Turkmen language. When in doubt we can categorize people by their "milk" language. If a woman's primary language is the Teke/Tekke dialect of Turkmen then we call her a Teke/Tekke Turkmen and if she weaves a rug then it is a Tekke Turkmen Rug. It would be more correct to say Teke Rugs but Tekke rugs is accepted in the rug dealer/collector community. Interestingly the rugs generally fall into groups that correspond to language. This has caused me to come to the conclusion that weaving is an unspoken language.
Turkmen as a language is a branch of the Ohguz language. Ohguz is made up of Turkmen, Northern Azeri and Southern Azeri. From Turkey to the Caucasus, Iran, and Central Asia a huge portion of the 'tribal" rugs are woven by weavers who are ethnically part of the Ohguz group.
Please see: Oguz versus Turkic/Southern a Linguistic Reassessment of the Turkish Languages.
Turkmen Pile Tent Band Fragment
Slightly frayed on kilim end, small knick on one end corner, small reweave in outer border.
Approximately 32 ft. by 1 ft. (976 by 030 cm)
Warps: Wool, Z2S ivory.
Weft: Wool, Z2S, 2 shoots ivory.
Pile: Wool, asymmetrical knot open to the right.
Density: 11 – 14h 19 – 20v
Sides: Wool, 1 cord of two warps overcast in taupe.
Ends: Upper incomplete.
Lower: 2 in. pale salmon kilim with geometric pattern formed by single weft wrapped warp, sides and apex of pattern accented by light red stitching.
Colors: sand, cayenne, deep mauve, venetian red, indigo, ochre, pacific blue, mahogany.
Late 19th c. Turkmen Chirpi
A blue ground silk embroidered women’s coat (chirpi) with traditional motifs. Young women wore dark blue or black coats. In very good condition.
Turkmen Ensi Late 19th C.
Central Asia, West Turkestan, end of 19th century. ca. 164 x 117 cm Tent entrance carpet with Hatschlou Cross, Insi-Kush designs in the four sectors, inner and middle border of ashik designs, Tekke typical outer braid, and reminiscent of Ersari work. Good condition, original selvedges, remains of the kilim ends obtained.
Turkmen Birds with Worms in their Mouths
This piece is an elim of a Drynak Gul carpet.
Turkmen Silk Shawl or Head Scarf
This is the sort of scarf a woman would wear to show modesty in Afghanistan.
Turkmen Silk Shawl, Southwest Asia, Approximately 20th century.
Size: 3 foot 5 inch by 3 foot 5 inch by 10 foot.
Structure: Silk, floating weft sections, plain weave.
Ends: Warp-twined band with 2 inch piled-loop fringe.
Further Notes: Excellent condition.
Southwest Asia, circa 1900. Silk highlights. Approximately 26 ft. by 16 ft. 1 in. (7.93 m. by 4.90 m.)
Khall Mohammadi Turkmen
This is a Khall Mohammadi carpet from Afghanistan. Khall Mohammadi is the name of the producer of these rugs and he has gained notice in the industry because of the bright clear natural dye reds he has produced.
9 foot 3 inch by 6 foot 11 inches.
Structure: Asymmetrical knot open right. 7 knots per horizontal inch and 6 knots per vertical inch. 42 per square inch (651 per square decimeter). Depressed back.
Yarn Spin: Z.
Warp: 2 ply wool, tan.
Weft: 2 ply, 2 shots, red wool.
Pile: 2 Wool singles.
Ends: 2 1/2 inch weft faced plain weave with multicolored band of tapestry weave., warp fringe.
Selvages: 6 cord selvage brown wool.
Further Notes: Meaty handle, medium length pile, very substantial new rug. No holes, tears, rips or low spots. full pile.
The Vojtek Blau Turkmen Tentband
A Turkmen tentband, Turkestan, mid-19th century.
Silk highlights, stains, reselvaged, small repairs, old patches sewn and glued on reverse, pin holes.
Approximately 38ft. 2in. by 10in. (11.63 by 0.25m.)
Warp: wool, Z2S, natural ivory
Weft: wool, Z2S, natural ivory
Pile: wool, some silk; symmetrical knot
Density: 11 horizontal 21 vertical
Sides: not original
Ends: warp fringe
Complete tent girths or bands, such as the present lot, are rarely found today. Woven to decorate the circumference of a Turkmen yurt or tent, once they were removed from their utilitarian role and traded, their proportions became ungainly and many were cut down. As in most surviving tent bands, the field of the offered lot is a plain weave with the decorative elements being in symmetrically knotted pile. The design elements within each niche of this band are shared with examples attributed to various Turkmen tribes.
Turkoman Flatwoven Ok Bosh, Yomud group
Central Asia, late 19th century. 1’11” x 1’8”
The ok bosh format is one of the most enigmatic in the repertoire of the Turkoman weavers. The designs are very different than what one sees in any other type of weaving attributable to the Turkoman. Apparently only the Yomud and Tekke weave this type of bag, which is thought to be a dowry weaving intended for decorative, ceremonial use during wedding procession. The zig zag design seen here is one seen in both pile and flatweave Yomud examples. The whites are cotton, not an uncommon feature.
All natural dyes. Apparently missing the triangular flaps at the bottom end, some minor surface wear, no holes, no stains, no repairs. This is an antique weaving, therefore it cannot be expected that it will be in “new condition.”
Turkoman Rug 1850s or Afghan Rug 1950s
Turkoman design Baluch Rug early 20th C.
Khorasan, northeast Persia, early 20th century. 6ft. 8in. x 3ft.8in. 2.03m. x 1.12m. An unusually good example of this Turkoman design type.
Sail Boat Khal Mohammadi Turkmen
Sailboats and fish are unusual in Turkmen rugs, but this is an unusual rug. This is a Khal Mohammadi carpet from Afghanistan.
4 foot 4 inches by 6 foot. (Not including fringe).
Structure: Asymmetrical knot open right. 10 knots per horizontal inch and 8 knots per vertical inch. 80 per square inch (1240 per square decimeter). Depressed back.
Yarn Spin: Z.
Warp: 2 ply wool brown.
Weft: 2 ply, 2 shots, red wool.
Pile: 2 Wool singles.
Ends: 1 1/4 inch weft faced plain weave and twining with warp fringe.
Selvages: 6 cord selvage red and brown wool in a saw tooth pattern.
Further Notes: New Rug.
Turkmen Rug From the Ulu Mosque in Divrigi
Antique Yomud Prayer Rug
A very rare and unique Yomut Namazlyk prayer rug circa 1800-50.
Antique Beshir Prayer Rugs
Antique Beshir 3 Arch Prayer Rug
Kizil Ajak Prayer Rugs
The Kizil Ajak are from Northern Afghanistan in what was the Uzbek Khanate of Balkh.
Antique Chodor/Chowdur Prayer Rug
Chodor Ensi, West Turkestan, last quarter 19th century. Stepped triangular floating mihrab and overall diamond lattice with ertman guls in midnight and navy blue, ivory, and light red on the aubergine-brown field, flowerhead-in-square compartment border, and ashik gul elems of similar coloration. Slight moth damage, small creases, small rewoven areas, small corner gouges. 6 ft. by 4 ft. 4 in.
Antique Arsary/Ersari Namazlyk prayer rug late 19th