Tiraz textile fragment - ROM2014_14244_30


Tiraz textile fragment

Medium:Glazed linen tabby with tapestry-woven decoration in silk
Geography: Egypt
Date: first half of the 12th century
Period: Fatimid Dynasty
43.8 x 27.5 cm
Object number: 978.76.208
Credit Line: Abemayor Collection given in memory of Dr. Veronika Gervers, Associate Curator, Textile Department (1968-1979) by Albert and Federico Friedberg. Certified by the Canadian Cultural Property Export Review Board under the terms of the Cultural Property Export and Import Act. Attestée par la Commission canadienne d'examen des exportations de biens culturels en vertu de la Loi sur l'exportation et l'importation de biens culturels.
Not on view
DescriptionTiraz textile fragment. Closely woven bleached linen tabby, somewhat glazed, with inserted tapestry bands in red and yellow silk. The design consists of 5 bands: just the central band has 2 rows of kufic inscription, the rest have hares in rope-like bands and plant scrolls. By the 12th century, the archaic kufic script started to give way to the cursive style called naskhi, but this is still in kufic. The inscriptions no longer communicate the protocol of the Fatimid caliph; instead, the words convey general wishes for success and well-being. The decorative bands become wider and denser; in this case, there are multiple bands of rope-like interlace enclosing hares. The yellow silk ground imitates more expensive gold-wrapped thread. Because of the complexity and scale of the tapestry decoration, it was probably originally intended as a furnishing fabric; however, its final use was as a burial shroud. N.B. The textile has been mounted face down, so that we see the reverse.
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