Caucasian rugs come from mountains region between the Black Sea and Caspian Sea.
In 1813 it was conquered by Russians before it belonged to Persia.
In the course of time many different people have settled in the caucuses; Turkoman tribe from Central Asia, Turks, Persians and Armenians.
Part of the effect has been the region to many different tribes and tongues.
Yet in spite of this, Caucasian rugs have many features in common, whether they were made north or south of the mountains which divides the region to preserve its traditional patterns and colors.
The Turkish knot (Ghiordes knots) is used everywhere, and the rugs are usually knotted on a foundation of wool rarely of cotton.
The dominate colors in Caucasian rugs are red, blue, yellow green and ivory, some brown is also used.
The patterns have a definite geometrical tendency.
The main features of the design from coherent pattern while the minor pattern has no connection with one anther.
Stars, squares and swastikas are from large part of decoration.
It is not unusual to come across flowers, animals or human beings.
These are also geometric in design very angular and hard to identify.
Some Basic Facts about Caucasian Rugs
- All caucasian rugs are made with the Turkish or Giordes knot
- "Kazak" carpets are not from Kazakstan (which is on the other side of the Caspian Sea) - but are from an area in what is now Armenia.
- The colors of older Caucasian Rugs are mostly made from natural materials found in the respective tribal regions.
- Most older Caucasian rugs are "all wool" - not only the knotted pile, but the warp and weft threads are usually made from hand spun woolen yarn or goat hair
- However, one can sometimes find older carpets (and more frequently in some newer examples) with cotton warps and wefts
- Warp threads can be made of un-dyed light yarn in one area, and dark or mixed in another. Goat hair is also seen for the warp threads, but never for the pile.
- Weft threads can be different colors: rusty red/brown, blue or white.
- The number and colors of selvages often can be an identifier to the area of origin
The largest group of the Caucasian rugs are Kazaks of various types. These are rugs made in south central Caucasus, stretching from Erivan in Armenia to Tiflis in Georgia. Kazaks were produced both as high-piled rugs from mountain areas and as low-piled rugs from the valleys, villages and settlements, many of which have their own easily recognizable characteristics and elements.
Known for their bold designs and bright harmonious colors and good quality dyes, some of the most spectacular geometrically designed rugs found anywhere in the east originated here.
Note: New Kazak rugs are made mostly in Afghanistan these days; new Kazaks they don't have the quality and values of original of Kazaks.
The Kazak rugs are subdivided to the following types:
- Bordjaloo Kazaks(Borchalou)
- Chagli Kazaks(Shikli)
- Cloudband Kazaks
- Eagle Kazaks (Chelarberd )
- Karachopt Kazaks
- Lambaloo Kazaks (Lambalo)
- Lori Pambak Kazaks
- Pinwheel Kazaks
- Shield Kazaks
- Star Kazaks
- Tree Kazaks
Here is a good Example of Caucasian Shirvan Merasily Prayer Rug Crica 1890's.
Karachopt Kazaks are known for its big octagon shape medallion, its big center medallion can be very outstanding among Kazak Rugs. here is a good example of an antique Karachopt Kazak rug.