Silk: complementary weft-faced twill with inner warps (samit)
Overall: 28.9 x 20.3 cm (11 3/8 x 8 in.); Mounted: 37.8 x 29.2 cm (14 7/8 x 11 1/2 in.)
Purchase from the J. H. Wade Fund 1947.193
At the bottom, men with spears hunt ostrich.
This silk sleeve blends technical and stylistic elements that occurred in early Islamic art. The sides of the sleeve are decorated with a lotus flower design, an ancient Egyptian motif that was absorbed into Hellenistic and Byzantine art. The upper panel displays a large medallion composed of leaves and palmettes, common vegetal motifs in Islamic art of this period. Below, the mace-wielding horseman is identified in Coptic inscriptions as Joseph, father of Jesus and saint within the Coptic faith. The image is likely derived from the Byzantine representation of the victorious emperor.
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