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Antique Silk Kashan Oriental Rugs and Carpets


An antique* silk Kashan is a type of Persian Rug which is at least 100 years of age.  Silk Kashans in general vary greatly in structure, and color use.  Perhaps one of the most distinguishing factors for each type include coloring and design.  Antique silk kashan rugs often feature medallions, however are also known to have allover patterns.  These rugs are rarely found in repeat patterns.

There are many types of silk Kashan rugs, those of which include Souf Kashan's, which feature flatwoven areas (sometimes using metal thread) and raised pile, giving the rug a three dimensional pattern.  Colors used in Souf Kashans include mustard, green, bright cranberry red and ivory. 

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Kashan, Iran is located in the center of Iran

An additional category of silk Kashan include the silk Mohtashem Kashan, which are often easily identified by the choice of colors used, and the aging of such.  Silk Mohtashem Kashans often feature greyish tones, deep purple and aqua blue.  It's not uncommon for these rugs to show quite a bit of oxidation over the years, giving the pile a faded patina.  Looking at the reverse side of these rugs often reveals the true original colors. 

These next two photographs illustrate the antique silk Kashan variety quite well.

Silk Rug

Above: an antique silk kashan dating to the later 19th century.  Note the intense violet, stunning intricay, and sprawling motify and pattern.  These carpets are notorious for the high density knot count, rarity, collectibility and of course stunning aesthetics and impressions.

Persian Rug

Above: a close-up photograph showing the dark side of an antique silk Kashan.  Note the amazing detail, and balance of motif atop the deep violet field.  No space goes unspoken for without the balance of the field color to compliment.  The extraordinary level of detail, depth and saturation of color and stunning crafstmanship make this a truly exceptional rug.  Photographs courtesy Old New House for small rugs.

Some of the most unusual and rare silk Kashan rugs are those of which have Hebrew or Judaic motifs, which may include woven script from the Torah, or reference to historic sites.  kpsi for silk Kashan rugs is usually in the vicinity of 300+ KPSI.

While antique silk kashan rugs and carpets rarely serve as practical rugs for your floor, they may serve as excellent candidates for wall hangings and investment quality pieces.



Sotheby's April 10 & 11, 1981:

Sotheby's Fine Oriental Rugs and Carpets.  New York, April 10 & 11, 1981



The following lots are from Sotheby's New York Auction Catalog, which were up for bid on April 10 & 11, 1981 in New York. Click on each image for additional information on each rug and what they sold for (if they sold)!




Lot 365, Persian Silk Kashan Prayer Rug, Sotheby's 1981Lot 365:


Circa 1900, small repairs.  Approximately 6 feet 7 inches (2.01 m.) x 4 feet 4 inches (1.32 m.)

Estimate: $12,000 / 16,000 




Silk Kashan, Lot 381, 1981.  Sotheby's Fine Oriental Rugs and CarpetsLot 381:


Circa 1900.  Approximately 6 feet 11 inches (2.11 m.) x 4 feet 4 inches (1.32 m.)

Estimate: $14,000 / 18,000 




Antique Mohtasham Kashan Silk Persian RugLot 423:


Circa 1875.  Approximately 3 feet 8 inches (1.22 m.) x 3 feet 3 inches (.99 m.)

Estimate: $8,000 / 10,000 


Silk Souf Kashan Paradise Persian Rug DesignLot 431:


First quarter 20th century.  Approximately 5 feet 8 inches (1.52 m.) x 3 feet 5 inches (1.04 m.)


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Want to purchase rugs like the ones mention in this post? Here are some options...


Inexpensive: Take a look at Kashan Rugs up for bid on eBay!
Moderately priced: Take a look at Kashan Rugs up for bid on eBay!
Investment quality: Take a look at Manchester Kashan Rugs up for bid on eBay!

Ant. Silk Kashan



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