Karakeçili Northwest Anatolia

This kelim was discovered in western Anatolia in the mid-1980s. Its bold charisma could be sensed immediately. Its old age, the symbolism of the hexagons and the magnificent variety of colours were more than impressive. No comparable Karakeçili flat-weaves of this age are known.

The borders on the top and bottom indicate the region around Kütahya. The few symbols on the sides could have had a spiritual (shamanistic) significance for the weaver. They were the only personal way for her to express herself; everything else was traditionally defined.

The colours – a beautiful madder red, glastum blue and a magnificent green – suggest the Karakeçili tribe, which lived in the region from Bergama to Kütahya. This tribe is first mentioned for the region in the 15th century AD. In the Ottoman Empire it was one of the most powerful confederations in northwest Anatolia. Only a few early flat-weaves by the Karakeçili (which supposedly means: “Those with the black goats”) have been preserved as donations to mosques before 1800.

Property of: Galerie Kelim, Würzburg
Size: 164 x 320 cm
Age: before 1800
Condition: good -given its age
Warp: wool
Weft: wool