Examples of Baku Surahani Rugs & Carpets
Surahani is from Surakhany a town on the Apsheron Peninsula 15 km north-east of central Baku.
These rugs average 84 KPSI and 35 square feet in size. Just over half have cotton warps. About 45% of these rugs are wool wefted Stone, P.F. Rugs of the Caucasus: Structure and Design. page 20 and 216. Light red wool wefts are less common than white but still normal. Following Schurmann, Ulrich. Caucasian Rugs plate 66, many in the trade call these Shirvan but Baku seems a better attribution.
Surahani Baku Long Rug
Rugs such as this are called Surahani in the trade. Surahani is from Surakhany a town on the Apsheron Peninsula of Baku. These rugs average 84 kpsi and 35 square feet in size. About 45% of these rugs are wool wefted Stone, P.F. Rugs of the Caucasus: Structure and Design. page 20 and 216. This rug is about average in size but has a a lower than expected knot count. The light red wool wefts are less common than white but still normal. Following Ulrich Schurmann’s Caucasian Rugs plate 66, many in the trade call these Shirvan but Baku seems a better attribution.
Shirvan-Baku Surakhani rug
Overall wear, heavy in small areas, slight kinking, reweave. Although such rugs are attributed to Surahani, a village on the Apsheron Peninsular in the Baku region, they were probably made all over the eastern Caucasus.
Shirvan Baku Surahani Rug
Shirvan Baku Surahani
Age: last quarter 19th century or turn of the century ( Fuschine colors)
Dimension: 152 cm X 110 cm ; 5ft X 3,6 ft
Warps: mixed tan and white wool, Z3S slightly depressed 15°
Weft: white cotton two shoots
Selvage: not original
Ends: warps fringes
Colours: perhaps Fuschine colors which faded.
Vertical row of three octagonal medallions containing the characteristic “4 T – Surahani” motif are framed by white border, often describe as channels, containing fish bone like motif.
Diamonds and a lot of geometrical motifs are scattered on a blue ground field.
Shirvan Surahani ‘Garden’ Rug
Size: 251 x 126 cm
Region: West Asia > Caucasus > Northeast Caucasus > Shirvan
Type: Rugs and Carpets
Date/Period: 19th century : late
Materials: soft wool, natural dyes.
Structure: Knots: 50 (v) x 31 (h) = 1,550 / dm2
Condition: Very good, with good pile all over.
A fantastic Shirvan Surahani ‘garden’ rug with a shield pattern with green and white latch-hooked diamonds within red octagons. Peter F. Stone calls this shield pattern the “turret design type” which, apart from the Shirvan area, is also to be “found on rugs attributed to the Kazak, Daghestan and Kuba districts” (on Rugs of the Caucasus: Structure and Design, Greenleaf Co.1984, pp. 156). When this design appears on Kuba rugs Ulrich Schurmann calls it the ‘Ordutch-Konagend’ pattern (on Caucasian Rugs, Poolesville, 1990, pp. 278).The center of each of the three middle latch-hooked diamonds has a Lesghi star, a rather unusual feature. Two additional Lesghi stars are placed at the corners of the central field’s top. On another Shirvan Surahani ‘garden’ rug with a shield pattern with latch-hooked diamonds within octagons Ian Bennett write that “these latch-hook diamonds within the outer octagons are attractive features not previously encountered on rugs of this type” (on Oriental Rugs – Volume 1 Caucasian, Suffolk, UK, 1981, pp. 259). This rug’s colors are uncommonly bold and balanced. The main border is a beautiful development of the traditional ‘leaf-and-calyx’ border design. The two darker floral borders around it suggest a more Northern attribution (Kuba). But the fact that the main motif of this rug may have been made in places hundreds of kilometers away suggests that several motifs were used outside their original place/village.
Surahani Fire Temple
Baku floats on a huge reserve of oil. Zoroastrians have used oil in their worship and there were fire temples. Surahan has long been a center of the fire worshipers and it is also a center of weaving.
German scholar Engelbert Kaempfer wrote in 1683, “that in Surakhani, a village alone not far from Baku, between 2,700 kg to 3,000 kg of oil were extracted daily for export. This quantity filled 80 carriages carrying 8 oil bags each.” 10.2 An Overview – Baku: City that Oil Built – by Farid Alakbarov