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Antique Thracian Kilim

Circa 1890
243 × 173 cm 7’11” x 5’8”


Exquisite antique Thracian Kilim from the late 19th century in wonderful preserved condition. From a private collection it has had a light fabric backing on for a long period of its life, used predominantly in a bedroom. Woven with gorgeous natural dyes, the deep reds of the border balance beautifully with the varying watery indigo blues in the main field.  The weaver has used variants of blues in an almost wavy pattern which is supposed to represent water.  With gentle pale blues, pinks and ivory wool the balance of colours is perfect.  We can also see a small one way flower in the centre of the kilim, a very pretty decorative piece.

Thracian Kilims are generally of a fine weave, with motifs of stylised leaves, birds sitting on branches and tree of life designs.  Prayer Kilims were also woven, as well as hooked diamond-shape medallions too. They favoured deep reds, blues, greens with whites and little yellow.   They are collectable and fine weavings, with their structure using a slit-weave technique.  Rare to find a late 19th century example in such wonderful original condition.

If you would like to view this antique kilim at home, please do request a home visit.  We love to travel all around the UK and help customers find the perfect antique rug for their home.  It is a free, no obligation service we have offered for over 25 years of business.

. . .

In the middle of the fifth century BC the first Thracian state was established in the Maritsa valley. From the South-East of the Balkan Peninsula, the earliest of the European civilisations, the Thracian tribes resided.  From the middle of the thirteenth century Thrace came under Ottoman rule, which continued until the nineteenth century.

Thrace today comprises the region which is bordered by Macedonia to the West, Bulgaria and the Black Sea to the north.  Its eastern side incorporates the European part of Turkey. Evidence shows weaving dating back to the Neolithic era, with archaeological digs finding loom weights, spindle whorls and impressions of woven mats.  Kilims from this region are known as Thracian or Sarkoy kilims, even though Sarkoy is within modern Turkey.  Generally the name Sarkoy is used for kilims woven much further north in Bulgaria.

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