Tiraz textile fragment - ROM2008_10310_2


Tiraz textile fragment

Medium:Bleached linen tabby with silk tapestry inscription
Geography: Egypt
Date: 1035-1095
Period: al-Mustansir (r. 1035-1095), Fatimid Dynasty
27 x 90.3 cm
Object number: 963.95.6
Not on view
DescriptionThe Tiraz fragment is decorated with a tapestry woven inscription band in red silk floss against a bleached linen ground. There is a selvage on the right side, while the other sides are raw. A 2.2 cm wide inscription band is placed across the width, but is damaged at the beginning and incomplete at the end. The Kufic script is executed in precise thick and thin lines, showing rising tails, with a tendency to coil the curving parts of letters (eg "waw", "ayn"). The medial "c ayn" takes the form of a crown-like trefoil blossom. The terminals are bifurcated. Most unusual is the extensive use of the arc in base lines, within letters, as well as for ligatures. The background of the inscription is treated as a series of small panels, demarcated by the vertical staffs. Each panel is decorated in a slightly different way, with combinations of zigzags and dots in three registers or s-shaped motifs. The inscription reads: "bismillah, the merciful, the compassionate, there is no god but allah alone, he has no partnr, muhammad is the prophet of allah, ali is the friend of allah, may allah bless them both. Assistance from allah to the servant of allah and his friends ma add (abi tamin)...". The inscription refers to the fatimied caliph al-mustansir billah.
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