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Anatolian Turkish Kilim Rug Motifs

Turkish symbols
Turkish symbols

A Turkish kilim is a flat-woven Anatolian rug. Although the term “kilim” is frequently used broadly in the West to refer to any sort of rug, including pile carpets, it refers to a particular weaving style. Kilim patterns are made by wrapping colored weft threads around pairs of warp threads backward and forwards, leaving the final weave entirely flat. Turkish Kilim rug motifs can come in a variety of forms, sizes, and colors, all chosen under the preferences and customs of a particular town or tribe. It’s challenging to differentiate between some patterns, such as the dragon and the scorpion, which both have the same fundamental diamond form with a hooked or stepped edge. Several themes are unique to Anatolia (Turkey). Others can also be found in the Caucasus and Persia (Iran). Rug weaving began quite early in regions where nomadic Turkish communities resided. During the 14th through the 16th century, paintings by early European artists like Holbein, Memling, and VanEyck, among others, frequently used Turkish rug motifs.
From the beginning, weavers have held the notion that by weaving or replicating a hazardous animal, they will gain control over it and be protected from it. The scorpion, the snake, and the wolf’s foot or wolf’s mouth are a few examples of these. Several Turkish rug themes represent a defense against wild creatures and any evil or malice that the weaver may fear may endanger her or her family. Several Turkish rug patterns depict the evil eye and the destruction it may do to the weaver, her family, and her clan. These symbols include the cross, the hook, the scorpion, the human eye, and the burdock, among others.

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