Posted on: February 18, 2020

Find it at the Met – The Nidge Carpet

The Nidge carpet is a quintessential example of Kerman rug design at its pique. Continue reading to learn about the legacy of these spectacular Persian carpets that are still prevalent in design today.

The Nidge carpet is composed of a diamond lattice framework that is filled with crosses of floral motifs in red, blues, yellows, and cream.

Kerman has been an epicenter for fine handmade Persian carpets since Safavid rule. The region’s decorative arts flourished during this era, elevating the stylized motifs of previous dynasties to new heights. More specifically, magnificent textiles were renowned for their aesthetic and craftsmanship. Stylistically, Kerman rugs of the 18th century often employed an ogival lattice pattern. This means that their field is based in a grid structure that does not shy away from the inclusion of ornate flora and fauna forms.

The Nidge carpet is composed of a diamond lattice framework that is filled with crosses of floral motifs in red, blues, yellows, and cream.

Dated to the 18th century, historians are not certain whether the Nidge carpet was woven in Kerman or northwest Persia. It was found in a mosque in a city in central Anatolia called Nidge. Its design and craftsmanship, however, point to its origin being undeniably Persian. The incorporation of Chinese cloud-bands and lotus flowers paired with the geometric lattice frame is doubtlessly the mark of Safavid design. The Safavid’s carried on the tradition set by the descendants of Genghis Khan. They merged the motifs found in East and West Asia, advancing the overall aesthetic of the carpet. This is especially true in many Kerman-made rugs because of the city’s status as a worldwide exporter.

This 4'6" x 6'3" Meeshan shows a similar lattice framework to the Nidge carpet, but its yellow, orange, red, and brown flowers are separated into a grid by a blue field and bound by two thick boarders in colors similar to the flowers in the field.

The Kerman-styled ogival lattice pattern seen in the Nidge carpet spread throughout Persia. They are seen in transitional and tribal Persian carpets as well. For example, the carpet pictured above is an Orley Shabahang piece designed in the fashion of Meeshan rugs that hailed from northwestern Iran. The carpet pictured below is also an Orley Shabahang piece, but in this case the design is styled after the carpets of the tribal Bakhtiaris. Both of these carpets mimic the lattice framework filled with geometric floral patterns.

This 10' x 14' Bakhtiari design shows a similar design to the Nidge carpet but the field is in midnight blue and the designs are in light blue, light green, cream, and orange.

To find more carpets in the style and quality of the Nidge carpet, visit Orley Shabahang. See our collection of the world’s most impressive antiques and modern handmade carpets that will be just as museum-worthy.