Sep 2, 2008

Cloth of Gold: Displayed Falcons

Cloth of Gold: Displayed Falcons


Silk and gold thread, lampas

Overall: 57.5 x 18.4 cm (22 5/8 x 7 1/4 in.); Mounted: 67.9 x 29.8 cm (26 3/4 x 11 3/4 in.)

Edward L. Whittemore Fund 1996.297



Mongol ceremonial robes, known as zhisun, were made from textiles woven with gold and silk of one color. These were given by Mongol emperors to members of the court to be worn during festivals and on important occasions that usually included lavish banquets. Like the Winged Lions and Griffins (1989.50), the design of this silk is a uniquely Central Asian synthesis of eastern Iranian and Chinese elements. Motifs and technical details shared by the two silks, moreover, leave no doubt that they were produced in the same city.

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