Carpets from Turkmenistan


1 in: catalog of the Exhibition of Oriental Rugs in Austria, Trade Museum, by Alois Riegl with a foreword by A. von Scala, Vienna 1891, p. 119, this chapter was edited by Carl Kaufmann.

2 V. G. Moshkowa reported tradesmen of Central Asia referred to the Turkmen and specifically the Yomut rugs in this way. See also V. G. Moschkowa, Rugs of the People of Central Asia in the late 19th and early 20th century, published by Reinhold Schletzer, Berlin 1998, p. 28 (cited by Grebenkin, A.D., 1871).

3 Refer to footnote 1.

4 Rudolf Neugebauer and Julius Orendi, Pocketbook of Oriental Rug History, Leipzig, 1909.

5 Andrei A. Bogoluboff (Bogolyubov), Tapisserie de l´Asie Centrale ... St. Petersburg 1908 (Russian and French), German translation by Joseph Kuderna, Hirsemann, Leipzig 1911, p. IX f.; English edition by Jon Thompson, Fishguard, Wales 1973.

6 See above.

7 Hermann Vambery, The Turkic People and its Ethnological and Ethnographic Relations, Leipzig 1885, p. 385.

8 Mahmud Kashagari, Divanu-Lugat-it-Turk, Tipkibasimi “Faksimile”, Ankara 1941, p. 40 cont. See also W. Barthold, Turkmen, in: Enzylkopaedia of Islam (E o I), Edition I, Vol. IV, Leiden-Leipzig 1934, p. 1050. Although this author knew of 24 tribes, he only mentions 22. Two of them supposedly broke away prior to the Islamic age, forming the people of Khaladj, who eventually traveled south and west (see also V.V. Barthold, Four Studies on the History of Central Asia, translated from the Russian by V. and T. Minorsky, Vol. III, Mir Ali-Shir, A History of the Turkman People, Leiden 1962, 82). It is also interesting to know that in western Persia, in the region of the northern Farahan, there used to be a region called Khaladjestan (Land of the Khaladj), from which a part of the Kashkai tribe migrated towards southwestern Persia during the age of the Atabeg (or, more likely, during the rule of probably of the Salghurid of Fras, 1148 until 1284).

9 E. Berthels, Rashid al Din Tabib, in: Enzyklopaedie des Islam (E o I), Edition I, Vol. III, Leiden-Leipzig1936, p. 1213. His work includes two further volumes: Vol. I, 1: The history of the Turkish and Mongolian tribesmen and their structure, genealogy and tales. 2: Genghis Khan, his predecessors and successor until Ghazan. Vol. II, preamble by Adam, The Islam prophets, 1. The Old Persian kings, 2. Mohammed and the Caliphs until 1258. History of the Persian dynasties. The Eastern and Western Ismailites. Oghuz and the Turks, the Chinese, Hebrews, Franks, their Kaisers and Popes, India, Buddha and his religion.

10 Hermann Vambery, The Turkic People and its Ethnological and Ethnographic Relations, Leipzig 1885, p. 1.

11 Karl Jahn, The History of the Oghuz of Rashid ad-Din, Austrian Academy for Science, Islamic Philology and Cultural History Studies Vol. IV, Vienna 1969, p. 8.

12 See above.

13 Hermann Vambery, op cit, p. 385.

14 See above, p. 78, and, Karl Jahn, op cit, p. 18 (Dib means “throne” and “rank” and Yawku, “leader of the people”).

15 See above, p. 92 cont. Karl Jahn, op cit. 18.

16 Karl Jahn, op cit, p. 26.

18 In regards to this, see: U. Harva, The Religious Ideas of the Altaic People, Helsinki 1938; W. Schmidt, The Origin of the Idea of God, Munster 1955.

19 The formation of flanks was of vital importance, both strategically and militarily, to people who were at war practically all the time. Bow and arrow were the symbols of royal might and of battle. See also Karl Jahn, op cit, p. 43. The Turkmen were famous for their skills as riders and archers.

20 This was to ensure the three sons stayed together, guaranteeing their success. Divided bothers would be as useless to the cause as a broken bow.

21 Karl Jahn, op cit, p. 44. Especially the account of Oghuz Khan’s age was disqualified as being a mere tale of the Oghuz people. But I should point out the Turkmen calculated time in a different manner. According to their calculations Oghuz was a thousand years old, which according to our concept of time would measure to about 126 years – not entirely an impossibility.

22 Karl Jahn, op cit, p. 45. Of course, originally listed by Rashid al Din, op cit, p.116 and 117.

23 Because of misuse or omission of diacritical symbols found in various handwritten documents different readings are possible. We mostly relied on Karl Jahn’s interpretations, as cited above, p. 45 cont.; Faruk Suemer, Oguzlar (who studies the Turkmen), Istanbul 1992, p. 17- and 171.

24 Also a sort of falcon or hawk.

25 A falcon or hawk called “Three birds”.

26 M. Th. Houtsma, The Ghuz Tribes, in: Vienna Journal for the Study of the Orient, Vol. II, Vienna 1888, p. 232.

27 The sorts of forces and restraints any social order and structure imposes on its members.

28 Cl. Huart, The Seldjuk, in: (E o I), Edition I, Vol. IV., Leiden-Leipzig 1934, p. 222.

29 All the states that employed classic knotting techniques. These territories mostly belonged to the Great Seljuk in Iran.

30 See W. Barthold, Batu Khan, in: (E o I), Edition I, Leiden-Leipzig 1913, p. 709-712.

31 Yake means collar, border or limit; Yake or Border Turkmen: See the Iskander Beg Munschi, “Tari-khe Alma Araye Abbassi”, Teheran 1314 = 1896/97, p. 399 (stone print). This regards the extensive history of Shah Abbass I(the Great 1586 to 1627) and his predecessors. This history appeared first at around 1628.**what history book?

32 M. Th. Houtsma, The Ghuz Tribes, in: Vienna Journal for the Study of the Orient, Vol. II, Vienna 1888, p. 222. The author says: “It is not improbable that the Osman (Othoman) tribe, for the histories regarding the beginning of the Osman people refer to the Ghuz tribe, of which the Osman were a part of, as Kayi Khanli (meaning, “of Kayi Khan”).” At the same time, Kayi I was also a division of the Goklan according to H. Vambery(The Turkish people…, op cit, p. 394).

33 Vasil’eva, quoted by Dieter and Reinhold Schletzer, Old Silver Jewelry of the Turkmen, Berlin-Hamburg 1984, pg. 16 and the following pages.

34 V.V. Barthold, History....op cit, p. 138.

35 L. Bouvat, Shaibani Khan, in: Edition I, Vol. IV, Leiden-Leipzig 1934, p. 292-294

36 The first translation was published by Tomanskiy in 1897 in Ashkhabad. There is another translation, done by A. N. Kononow; see also B. Spuhler, Abu L-Ghazi Bahadur Khan, in Enzyklopaedia of Islam, Edition I, Vol. 1, Leiden-London 1960, p. 121

37 Wolfgang König, The Achal Teke, About Economy and Society of a Turkmen Group in the XIX Century, Berlin 1962, p. 12; see also V.V. Barthold, History ... op cit, p. 137

38 Refer to S. Azadi and R. Vossen, op cit, p. 55; also, “Like Flowers in the Desert,” P. A. Andrews-S.U. Azadi-A. & V. Rautenstengel-H.C. Sienknecht, Hamburg 1993, p. 44 -57. This knowledge of various clans is helpful if one wants to recognize them out of context. Without assigning names, it is impossible to trace movement and changes.

39 Wolfgang König, The Achal Teke, iop cit, p. 12.

40 See above.

41 Cited in Wolfgang König, op cit p. 64 and 65. He lists 48 different names.

42 See above, p. 65.

43 See above, p. 78.

44 Refer to footnote 34. It lists them as Stone Salor.

45 Hermann Vambery, Travel to Central Asia…, Leipzig 1865, p. 282 See also V.V. Barthold, The History of..., op cit, 163-165. The Yomut influenced the fate of Khiva not only throughout the 18th, but also in the 19th century. During the course of various skirmishes, they inflicted quite some damage: for example, they plundered Khiva in 1804 during Iltuzar Khan’s absence (1800 until 1804), who fell in the battle against Bokhara.

Mohammad Amin Khan (1843 until 1855), ruler of Khiva, fell in 1855 during a military campaign against the Tekke, who were led by Kushut Khan in Sarakhs. In the same year, Mohammad Amin Khan’s successor also died in the struggle against the Tekke; the leader to follow him, Kultuk Murad Khan, was killed by participating Yomut forces in 1856. We see then how influential and powerful the Yomut and Tekke were throughout the 19th century, or, how weak Khiva had become.

46 We do not want to undermine the extraordinary achievements of famous 1960’s aesthete Ulrich Schürmann but his late statements, published in a chapter called “What’s in a name?”, need to be revised. (This chapter can be found in: Oriental Rugs, Wiesbaden 1979, p. 40-44. Names are after all the key to the building that might house vital information about artist and artwork. Names are neither contrary to aesthetic ideas, nor do they contradict them: rather, they add to the entirety of the picture and reveal that the artwork is more than an object of beauty. Admittedly his becomes a treacherous enterprise if one encounters a wrongful name but this should not hinder research nor result in resignation. In the pursuit of knowledge, one must be able to stand up to criticism of those who chose to eternally live in the past. It was this attitude that greatly furthered comprehension and understanding of Turkmen rug culture over the last 45 years.

46 Turkmen Tribal Carpets and Traditions, Edited by Luise W. Mackie and Jon Thompson, Textile Museum, Washington, D.C. 1980, p. 134-144. Also: Jon Thompson, Sotheby´s, Turkmen and Antique Carpets from the Collection of Dr. and Mrs. Thompson, New York, Dec. 1993, item 42, 44, 45, 46 and 50, referring to the main rugs.

47 “Like Flowers in the Desert,” P.A. Andrews - S.U. Azadi - A. & V. Rautenstengel - H.C. Sienknecht, Hamburg 1993, p. 44 –57.

48 A. & V. Rautenstengel and S.U. Azadi,....,op cit, p. 120-130, Turkmen Culture, Hilden 1990.

49 G.I. Karpov, The Yomut, published in the Russian journal “Turkomenovedenie” in the years from 1928 until 1931, German translation by Dr. Bernd Rullkötter, in: Turkmen studies, Vol. II, Hamburg, 1979, p. 43-51.

50 Nicolaus of Murawiew, The Royal Russian ambassador N. of Murawiew, Travel from Turkmenistan to Chiwa in the years of 1819 and 1820. Translated by Philip Strahl,Berlin 1924, p. 145. An average of 5 people live in one Oy, so 40,000 tents stand for about 200,000 people.

51 When quoting names of tribes, sub-tribes, branch groups or clans, it is important to keep the following in mind:

1. Records rarely agree with reality. And even if they do, they only provide a snapshot of what once existed. Like all of human society, the Turkmen were a people who constantly underwent change as they were part of and influenced by large-scale events.

2. It is rarely we have an exact picture of these nomadic people especially because most data comes from different periods and was recorded by different individuals. We continue to work with such information to recognize, and make use of, specific names and groups to trace back the changes they have gone through.

An insight into structural changes of a culture might possibly lead to a deeper understanding of changing rug production and designs. Of course, onomatology comes with its own sets of questions but a closer examination of these issues among specialists would greatly further our understanding of Turkmen rug artistry.

52 Eskandar Beg Munshi, Tarikhe Alam Aray-e Abbassi, op cit, p. 399.

53 Siawosch U. Azadi, Goklan Turkmen and theirs Rugs, p. 135, in: Studies of Turkmen Rug Culture, Annette and Volker Rautenstengel. Main rugs with “Eagle” and Dyrnak Gol of various Turkmen groups, comparisons of their structures and appearances, Hilden 1990.

55 Bertold Spuhler, Abu L-Ghazi Bahadur Khan, in: Encyclopedia of Islam, Vol. I, Leiden-London 1960, p. 120.

56 Comparing an extensive history of the Salor, by G. I. Karpov and P. B. Arbekov, the Salor, in: Turkmenovednie, Hamburg 1979, p. 50.

57 W. Barthold, Teke, in: Ed I, Edition. I, Vol. IV, Leiden-Leipzig 1934, p. 779; also H.Vambery, op cit, p. 13.

58 G.I. Karpov and P.B. Arbekov, The Salor, op cit, p. 53-57.

59 See above, also based on Abul Ghazi¹s Genealogy of the Turkmen, also G. I. Karpov, The Genealogy of the Turkmen, Part I, in: Turkmenovedenie nr. 12, Ashkabad 1928, Turkmen studies, Vol. I, translated by Dr. Bernd Rullkötter, Berlin-Hamburg 1979, p. 10.

60 V. V. Barthold, Four Studies, op cit, p. 147.

61 V. V. Barthold, Four Studies, op cit, p. 146 cont.

62 Hermann Vambery, op cit, p. 397 cont..

63 G. I. Karpov, op cit, p. 12. All the names in parenthesis were given by Karpov and based on Vambery. But not from sources known to us, from his travels to Middle Asia, from Tehran through the Turkmenistan desert, along the East Coasts of the Caspian Sea to Chiwa, Bokhara and Samarkand. In 1863, Leipzig 1865, p. 245.

64 Choudor

65 It is not out of the question this is a later Sayin Khan Turkmen tribe in Khorassan, the Okhlu tribe.

66 Hasain Kitap Shasak Turki, Family book of the Mungali Mongol, or Mogoric Chanes, in addition to other tribes derived from them as well as from the Tattar Chanes: derived from a Charres clan member named Chan Abulgasi Bagadur Chan, of the Zingi family. In the capital city of Chiwa: In 1663,

67 S.P. Polyakov, Emiceskaja istorija severo-zapadnoy Turkmenii v serdnye veka. Moskva 1973, p. 164, quoted by Dieter and Reinhold Schletzer, Old Silver Jewellery of the Turkoman, An Essay on Symbols in the Culture of Inner Asian Nomads, Translated by Paul knight, Berlin 1984, page 18.

68 Siawosh Ulrich Azadi, Goklan Turkmen and their rugs, op cit, p. 135. See also Iskandar Beg Munshi, Tarikhe Alam Araye Abbassi, Teheran 1314 = 1896, p. 97 and 399, first published in 1628.

69 Elena Tzareva, Rugs and Carpets from Central Asia, The Russian Collections, Lenin-grad 1984, p. 6, footnote 3, p.22. See also Yuri Bregel, Nomadic and sedentary elements among the Turkmen, in: Turkmen studies, Vol. 12, p. 144, where he describes the disbanding of the Salor confederation as a conventionalized expression. Translated from English into German by Frank H. Ernsting: Nomadic and Sedentary Elements Among the Turkmens, in: Central Asiatic Journal 25 (1981): 5-37; see also William Wood, Turkmen Ethnohistory, in: Vanishing Jewels, Central Asian Tribal Weavings, Rochester Museum & Science Center 1990, p. 27. Catalogue was written by George O´Bannon.

70 See also footnote 68.

71 Wolfgang König, op cit, p. 11. Unfortunately, I couldn’t find the “Stone Salor” in Abul Ghazi’s text.

72 Wolfgang König, op cit.

73 See the maps from the catalogue Turkmen rugs and their ethnographic…, op cit, map, adapted by Ya. R. Vinikov, 1969 and by H.H. von Schweinitz, 1910. At the time, I was not aware of this fact.

74 W. Barthold, Four Studies, op cit, p. 137.

76 S. Azadi and R. Vossen, Turkmen Rugs, op cit, the map at the end of the book.

77 W. Barthold, Mangishlak, in: E d I, Vol. III, Leiden-Leipzig 1936, p. 264 cont.

78 Yuri Bregel, Çawdor, in Encyclopaedia of Islam, New Edition, Supplement, Leiden- London 1980, p. 169.

79 W. König, op cit, p. 23.

80 See above, p. 27.

81 Nikolai of Murawiew, op cit, p. 145.

82 Abul-Ghazi Bahadur Khan, The History of the Turks, 1665, op cit, p. 18 cont., part II.

83 Iskandar Beg Munshi, op cit, p. 405.

84 Abul-Ghazi Bahadur Khan, The History of the Turks, 1665, op cit, p. 21

85 V. V. Barthold, Four Studies...op cit, p. 143.

86 G. L. Penrose, “The politics of Genealogy, An Historical Analyses of Abu´l Gazi´s Shajere-I Terakima” (Ph.D. dissertation, Indiana University, 1975, p 279.

87 V. V. Barthold, Four Studies op cit, p. 143, Abul Ghazi, History of the Turks, op cit, p. 18. I could not find Meihane on any maps. Like Barthold, Wolfgang König cites Abul Gthazi, but mentions Akhal instead of Meihane, op cit, p. 16. His map omits this place.

88 These writing styles can be found in G. Le Strange, The Lands of the Eastern Caliphate, Cambridge Geographical Series, Cambridge 1905, p. 39.

89 We referred to this in the context of the Salor and the Saryk.

90 Siawsoch Azadi and Rüdiger Vossen, Turkmen rugs and the ethnographic… op cit, p. 53 cont., see also A. & V. Rautenstengel and S.U. Azadi, Culture of the Turkmen, op cit, p. 147 cont. This was the English translation of the 1970 catalogue.

91 Nikolai of Murawiew, op cit, p. 145.

92 Hermann Vambery, The Turkic People… op cit, p. 400.

93 G.I. Karpov, The Genealogy of the Turkmen, part I, op cit, p. 8 cont.

94 G.I. Karpow, see above, p. 10.

95 Abu’l-Ghazi..., G.L. Penrose, op cit, p. 284.

96 G.L. Penrose, op cit, p. 47.

97 V.V. Barthold, Four Studies... op cit, p. 132 cont.

98 G.L. Penrose, same as above (96).

99 Historical and Political Gazetteer of Afghanistan, edited by Ludwig W. Adamec, Vol. 4, Graz-Austria 1979, p. 83.

100 Same as above.

101 Gunnar Jarring, On the Distribution of Turk Tribes in Afghanistan, An Attempt at a Preliminary Classification, in: Lund Universitetes Arsskrift, N.F. Avd. 1, Vol. 35, nr. 4, p. 45 cont.

102 G.I. Karpov, op cit, p. 22. In this source he mentions where the Ersari live: in the areas of Burdalyk, Kara-Bekaul, Sayat, Kerkin, Kysyl-Ayak, Khalaj, Charshangin and Chodshambas.

103 A. N. Pirkulieva, The rug weaving of Central Amu Darya Valley Turkmen, in: Turkmen studies, Vol. 4, translated from Russian by Reinhold Schletzer, Hamburg 1981, The Russian Moskva 1966, p. 2

104 Same as above, p. 49

105 The Culture of the Turkmen, op cit, p. 138

106 I remind readers of the lectures of Annette & Volker Rautenstengel on 9/20/1986 at the 5. ICOC in Vienna. The first authors: Main rugs with ³Eagle² and Dyrnak Gol with various Turkmen groups comparison of their structure and their appearance, and Siawosch U. Azadi, Goklan Turkmen and their rugs, published in: Culture of the Turkmen, studies regarding the rug culture of the Turkmen, Hilden 1990. Only Jon Thompson in the catalogue of the III. ICOC exhibition catalogue, Washington, D.C. 1980 referred to this group as the Imreli but he soon after withdrew this term.

107 In the western literature, there are two exceptions. In his historic essay about Ulrich Schürmann’s book “Central Asian rugs”, Frankfurt am Main, 1969, p. 61, Hans-Conrad König had introduced the Goklan as a major tribe. Jon Thompson proposed Goklan rugs are Imreli. For more on this, see Turkoman Tribal Carpets And Traditions, Textile Museum Washington, D.C. 1980, p. 135. But Jon Thompson framed it as being a joke during the discussion following my lecture in Vienna.

108 We do not want to insult the numerous authors of Turkmen rugs by enumerating all of them.

109 But also other tribes. There were so many different kind of carpets ascribed as Yomut

110 Häntzsche, Topography and Statistics of the Persian Turkmen, in the Journal for General Geography, Berlin, 1862, p. 97 cont., also the English translation by R. Pinner and M. Franses, in: Turkoman Studies I, London 1980, p. 60 cont.

111 Rautenstengel Azadi, op cit, p. 137. This monograph refers to the Goklan the Eagle Goklan rugs.

112 Shajare-i Turk, op cit, p. 21

113 Genadi E. Markov (Markov), The Turkmen Population of the Khorezm Oasis, in: Asian Review, London 1954, No 184, p. 311. Refer also to the important work done by G. E. Markov, Form the History of the North Turkmen, in: Ethno-archaeological Studies, Volume 6, published by K.-H. Otto, Berlin 1959, p. 57 cont.

115 Same as above.

116 Same as above, p. 60 and 69.

117 Chuvals with the Tekke-like Gol.

118 Siawosch Azadi, Turkmen in the Museums of the Soviet Union, in: Textile Folk Culture, nr. 6, Frankfurt am Main 1976, p. 37-38 (Excerpts of my lecture in the Hamburg Ethnographic Museum at the occasion of a collector’s convention in 1975. Also, an Arabachi rug, information about a newly discovered Turkmen tribe, in Art & Antiquities, nr. IV, Hanover 1977, p. 34-36; also in nr. V, p. 45-47; also in nr. 1, Hanover 1978, p. 54-56; also “An Arabachi Chowal”. evidence of a newly-discovered Turkmen tribes in same, nr. 1, Hanover 1979, p55-56.

119 op cit, p. 24.

120 A.A. Bogolyubov, Carpets of Central Asia, Edited by J M A Thompson, Wheathold Green, Ramsdell, England, plate 24.

121 Same as above, and a reference to the Ensi in Werner Grothe-Hasenbalg’s text, Masterpieces of Oriental Rugs, London , n.d. (1923), plate nr. 92.

122 G. Markov, From the History of the North Turkmen (part I), op cit, p.69.

123 Same as above.

124 Abu’l Ghazi, History 1664-1665, op cit.

125 Abu’l Ghazi, History 1664-1665, op cit.

126 Abu’l Ghazi, Shajare i-Terakime, version by G.I. Penrose, op cit, p. 279.

127 V.V. Barthold, Four Studies... op cit, p. 101-127.

130 Same as above, also W. Barthold, Khwarizmshah, in: E d I, Vol. III, Leiden-Leipzig 1927, p. 981

131 Same as above, where Barthold quotes the historians Juwayni and Hamdullah Qazwini

132 Same as above, p. 126

133 133 G. I. Karpov, The Yomut, op cit, p. 46

134 P. Polyakov, quoted by Dieter and Reihold Schletzer, op cit, p. 17.

135 P. A. Andrews, S.U.Azadi, V. & A. Rautenstengel, H.C. Sienknecht, op cit, p. 21 and depictions 47, description p. 7.

136 Siawosch Azadi and Rüdiger Vossen, Turkmen Rugs, op cit, table 12.

137 N. von Murawiew, op cit 147.

138 Julius Klaproth, Asiat Polyglott, Paris 1823, Table between the pages 216-218