Lampas: silk and gold thread
Overall: 170.5 x 109 cm (67 1/8 x 42 15/16 in.)
Purchase from the J. H. Wade Fund 1990.2
Mongol taste for luxury was equated with gold, symbol of imperial authority, power, and legitimacy. This splendid cloth of gold-exceptionally large and luxurious-may have enriched the interior of a palace or a majestic tent. The golden pattern, although tarnished on the faded red silk ground, features scalloped medallions with felines whose long tails terminate in dragons’ heads amid elegant floral vines. Double-headed eagles form interstitial motifs on the floral ground. A radiant gold-on-gold band of pseudo-Arabic script enriches the top, woven with gold strips wrapped around a silk core on a ground of flat strips of gold, immediately beneath the pattern testing area.
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