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Uncommon Accents

Antique Persian Rugs: More Than Just Vintage Rugs

07-20-2010By: Nicole

There are old rugs.  There are vintage rugs.  Then there is the Antique Persian Rug. 


Old rugs would include all those shag carpets, sometimes known as “wall-to-wall” carpets laid over the sub-floors in the various sub-divisions and housing developments across the US these last fifty and sixty years.  Most of these old rugs would have very little value to a discriminating collector.  Stained and thread-bare from traffic, kids playing, juice and soda spills and all the other messes of today’s life.  Maybe the type of rug that Russian spies used in their nefarious operations in the fifties.


Vintage rugs have more value as antique rugs than the plain old rugs in the previous paragraph.  Maybe the vintage rugs were woven by someone’s grandmother during long winter nights in times past in the US.  Vintage rugs might have been woven by the firelight during the seventeenth or eighteenth centuries and used next to the beds so folks didn’t have to step out of bed on cold winter mornings on to a cold floor.


But it is the antique Persian Rug that is the work of art.  It may have been woven by an unknown weaver during the times of Cyrus the Great or Darius the Great.  Or maybe it was woven during the times when the stories of Sinbad the Sailor originated.  Or during the times of the Crusades, but whenever it was woven, it was and is a work of art.  That unknown weaver would be quite surprised at the value placed on his or her handiwork in today’s marketplace as in the days when it was woven, it would have most likely been sold in the marketplace in Baghdad for a Daric or two (or whatever the ancient equivalent of a few pennies or nickels).


Today, collectors will pay thousands of dollars for authentic antique Persian rugs.    A fine antique Persian rug would most definitely fit in the category of fine art objects, a rug that could be used by spies in a James Bond movie.  These rugs are not only well-made (which has helped the rug to become an antique rug) but colorful and artistic patterns woven by the un-named and mostly unknown weaver allows these antique rugs to be used as more than just a rug; but possibly as a tapestry.  Which would also amaze the unknown weaver who most likely assumed that the purchaser of the rug in the local bazaar just wanted something to cover the floor.


It is possible that machine made rugs from today may at some unknown point in the future be declared vintage rugs rather than just old rugs.  However, it is doubtful that those vintage rugs will ever have the value, artistically and otherwise, as the very best antique Persian rugs.

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