Prayer Rug (Kilim), T94.2221
Posted: Jan 8th, 2020 | Collection Spotlight

Ramadan Mubarak! It’s the beginning of the holy month of Ramadan and to commemorate the occasion, this prayer rug, locally known as kilim, from the Balkan region of Europe is the Object of the Moment.

The centre field of this rug features an arch (mihrab) marking it as a prayer rug. In Islam, prayer rugs are used at home or outdoors to create a clean place for prayer as required by the Qur’an. Green is a symbolic colour in Islam as there are several mentions of it in the Qu’ran. You can find green in mosques, flags of Muslim countries and at different Muslim festivals around the world. Although green is relatively rare in Oriental rugs, it is no surprise to find it on a rug meant for religious use. Because this rug is coloured with natural dyes, we know that indigo (for blue) was over-dyed with a natural yellow (perhaps crocus pollen) to make the green. The result is a rich, deep green characteristic of over-dyed wool.

This object is featured on our Canadian Tapestry website, which celebrates Canada’s cultural diversity through cloth.

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