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Details & Cataloguing

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A Saber Mashad carpet, Northeast Persia
Knot density: V: 12/cm; H: 13/cm

With approximately 156 knots per square centimetre the total knot count of this carpet will be in excess of 39,000,000 knots.


approximately 611 by 413cm; 20ft., 13ft. 6in.
second quarter 20th century, with signature inscription 'Saber' 
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Catalogue Note

At the turn of the 20th century there was a resurgence of grand, highly refined, carpet weaving in Mashad; Abbas-qoli Saber is one of the master weavers who pioneered the revival of workshops producing superior quality pieces. A former student of the great master Amoghli, Saber was renowned for his skill and completed commissions both for Eastern and Western officials. The carpets he produced have a richness of palette, using the finest of wools, and are inspired from great classical carpets of the past. 

This carpet has an unusually high knot density for a work of such proportions, with in excess of 39 million knots certainly being a mark of the extraordinary skill and diligence tHat one associates with the best of the pieces produced by the Saber workshop.

For a comparable very fine Saber Mashad carpet (with the Saber inscription), of smaller proportions (425 by 321cm; 13ft. 11in., 10ft. 6in.), with knot density: V 13/14cm: H 12/cm, therefore in excess of 20,000,000 (20 million), and silk foundation, see Sotheby's, London, 1 November 2017, lot 126, from the Abdi Roubeni Collection. Roubeni purchased this cited comparable carpet with the assistance of Gholam Ali Kirmanshahi, a highly respected carpet broker in the Bazaar in Tehran. By repute, it had come from the collection of Fawzia Faud, Queen of Iran from 1939-45 as the first wife of Mohammad Reza Pahlavi.

See lot 129 in this sale for an ivory Saber Mashad carpet. For further information on the masterweavers in Mashad see Shaffer, D., ‘Amoghli’, Hali, Summer 2016, issue 188, p. 107. 

Rugs and Carpets

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