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Turkish Carpets and Kilims

The Oriental Carpets and the Turks

Carpet is the gift of Turkish people to world civilization. Knotted kilim, the oldest examples of which are found in Central Asia, where Turks live, is an art form discovered, developed and presented to the world by the Turks. The Turks invented the carpet using lamb's wool, which was abundantly available, to protect themselves from the cold of the Central Asian steppes, where they used to live.

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The Turks took this art form with them and spread it wherever they went. In the 1940s, Russian archaeologist Rudenko discovered the world's oldest surviving carpet in the fifth of the mounds, while excavating burial mounds at Pazyryk, at the foot of the Altai Mountains in Siberia, where Turkish people live. This carpet was woven using the Turkish knot between the 3rd and 2nd centuries BC, and it is generally accepted that this carpet is attributed to the Asian Khuns.


Hand-Made Carpets and Kilims

Carpet is a woven textile produced by knotting colored yarns in the warp and compressed by the weft. Two types of knots are used in carpet production: The Turkish (Gördes-symmetric) knot is wrapped around two warps, and the Persian (Sineasymmetric) knot is wrapped around a single warp. The Gordes knot makes a rug stronger, tighter and more durable, while the Sine knot enables different patterns to be woven. The tighter the knots, the finer and stronger the carpet. Turkish carpets and kilims are in the collections of the most valuable museums and collectors in the world. Today, world museums exhibit carpets woven in Anatolia, starting from the Seljuk period and continuing with the Ottoman state, as the most important and valuable works of art. Turkish carpets have a great influence in a vast region stretching from Central Asia to Europe. Carpets exported from Turkey since the middle of the 15th century gained great popularity in Europe and Turkish carpets played an important role in the social life of Europe.

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These tapestries are widely reflected in the paintings of the time and are fully depicted. This interest, which grew and continued in the 16th and 17th centuries, especially during the Renaissance, has shown the presence of at least one or more Anatolian carpets in portraits of aristocrats, religious figures or other illustrations. Turkish rugs have received so many awards in Europe that they often grace the table more than the floor. Having a Turkish rug was considered a status symbol, as Turkish rugs were highly respected. Hans Holbein, Lorenzo Lotto, Carlo Crivelli, Hans Memling and Gentile Bellini are some of the painters who use Turkish carpets in their paintings. Anatolian carpets and kilims have a universal reputation with their vivid colors, motifs, patterns and superior quality. Natural dyes are used, which many families keep in mind as to which leaves, flowers, roots and vegetables will produce the brightest colours.


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