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TRIBAL BAGS Page 1

TRIBAL BAGS are probably the most unspoiled, genuine, weavings of many tribal and pastoral groups throughout Central Asia and North Africa.

They are woven in many shapes and sizes and fulfill the storage function needed in tents and huts.   Small ones are for jewelry and precious personal items, also salt, spices, dried fruits, mirrors and cosmetics.  Medium sizes are pillows at night and cushions by day and are also used to store food, tools, clothing and household items.      There are even very large sacks for the storage of grain and textiles when not in use.  These double as beds for children.

Most bags are woven using only local wools, goat and sometimes camel hair.  Embellishments, both superstitious and religious, are frequent.   Durable goat hair is used for closing loops and for selvedges.

ANATOLIAN SADDLE BAG A rare semi-antique shepherd's bag from the region of Fetiyhe in south west Turkey. The long opening in the centre allows for the shepherd's head to go through and the bags hang on his front and back. The black and white photo shows a similar piece worn by a rural shepherd. This region in Ottoman Empire times was known as "Megri" but the name was changed around 1920. The intense shades of indigo, madder and mustard yellow are only found in this region and it is therefore probable they are natural dyes and sourced from nearby plants. It is in impeccable condition complete with the original small loops at each corner which allows it to be fastened to the body when worn. Reference 285. Size 131 x 47cms. 4ft. 4ins. x 1ft. 7ins.. Euros 450.

ANATOLIAN SADDLE BAG A rare semi-antique shepherd's bag from the region of Fetiyhe in south west Turkey. The long opening in the centre allows for the shepherd's head to go through and the bags hang on his front and back. The black and white photo shows a similar piece worn by a rural shepherd. This region in Ottoman Empire times was known as "Megri" but the name was changed around 1920. The intense shades of indigo, madder and mustard yellow are only found in this region and it is therefore probable they are natural dyes and sourced from nearby plants. It is in impeccable condition complete with the original small loops at each corner which allows it to be fastened to the body when worn. Reference 285. Size 131 x 47cms. 4ft. 4ins. x 1ft. 7ins. SHEPHERD WITH BAG.

THE FINE DESIGNS ARE SHOWN ON THE REVERSE SIDE.

MOROCCAN BERBER TENT CUSHION OR PILLOW the fineness of which indicates that it was woven as a dowry piece. The embroidered design is both intricate and beautiful, White cotton (which discolours less than wool in a smokey environment) and both genuine silk and mercerised cottons have been used in the designs. It originates from a village in the Zemmour Province in the western part of the Middle Atlas and I found it in the bazar in Khemisset. Reference 2204. Size 92 x 36 cms., or 36 x 15 inches. Euros 375.

MOROCCAN BERBER HIGH ATLAS TENT BAG. Known as "aalau" which is a squarish, partly piled bag usually woven by Berber women of the Ait Bou Ichaouen in the eastern High Atlas. The bag is given to a daughter prior to marriage and is subsequently used to contain either jewellery or clothing or sometimes ready-spun wool. It is fastened at the top by hand plaited rope which passes through a line of slits. This piece has been opened out and when in use would be folded in half and both sides joined together. The tassels at the midway stage would then hang down. The top row consists of an interesting design of 5 Berber tents. Weaving of this type is well described in "Ait Bou Ichaouen-Weaving of a Nomadic Berber Tribe" by Alfred and Suzanne Saulniers. It is a fascinating and collectable piece. Reference 2620. Size opened out 84 x 56cms. 2ft.9in. x 1ft.10in. Euros 170.

MOROCCAN BERBER HIGH ATLAS TENT BAG. Known as "aalau" which is a squarish, partly piled bag usually woven by Berber women of the Ait Bou Ichaouen in the eastern High Atlas. The bag is given to a daughter prior to marriage and is subsequently used to contain either jewellery or clothing or sometimes ready-spun wool. It is fastened at the top by hand plaited rope which passes through a line of slits. This piece has been opened out and when in use would be folded in half and both sides joined together. The tassels at the midway stage would then hang down. The top row consists of an interesting design of 5 Berber tents. Weaving of this type is well described in "Ait Bou Ichaouen-Weaving of a Nomadic Berber Tribe" by Alfred and Suzanne Saulniers. It is a fascinating and collectable piece. Reference 2620. Size opened out 84 x 56cms. 2ft.9in. x 1ft.10in. REVERSE.

AFSHAR TRIBAL BAG. An old piece which is in excellent condition with original overcasting and kilim back. The colours appear to be natural and the indigo blue is particularly intense. Reference 2405. Size 29 x 40cms. 1ft. x 1ft.4in. Euros 178.

AFSHAR TRIBAL BAG. An old piece which is in excellent condition with original overcasting and kilim back. The colours appear to be natural and the indigo blue is particularly intense. Reference 2405. Size 29 x 40cms. 1ft. x 1ft.4in. REVERSE.

MOROCCAN BERBER HIGH ATLAS BAG. Sometimes these bags, known as "aalau" are woven in pairs and used as a gift from the bride's mother to her daughter and son-in-law. It is the work of the Ait Bou Ichaouen Berbers of the far east High Atlas. It is old and in great condition with original tassels, overcasting and handle. It was probably subsequently used to store jewellery and precious items. The design is of repeated Berber fertility symbols. Reference 2646. Size 37 x 36cms. 1ft.2in.square. Euros 67.

MOROCCAN BERBER HIGH ATLAS BAG. Sometimes these bags, known as "aalau" are woven in pairs and used as a gift from the bride's mother to her daughter and son-in-law. It is the work of the Ait Bou Ichaouen Berbers of the far east High Atlas. It is old and in great condition with original tassels, overcasting and handle. It was probably subsequently used to store jewellery and precious items. The design is of repeated Berber fertility symbols. Reference 2646. Size 37 x 36cms. 1ft.2in.square. CLOSE UP.

BALOUCH / BELOUCH BAG FACES. A rare pair from the region of Firdous which lies in the desert region of Khorrasan in north east Persia. Saddle bags from this Belouch group are particularly rare. The kilim borders with embroidered designs of rows of goats are most unusual and I know of only one other piece with this feature which was shown in HALI Edition 94 on page 122. The wools are soft and lustrous. Reference 292A and 292B. Size 71 x 73cms. each. 2ft.4in. x 2ft.5in. each. Euros 680 the pair.

BALOUCH / BELOUCH BAG FACES. A rare pair from the region of Firdous which lies in the desert region of Khorrasan in north east Persia. Saddle bags from this Belouch group are particularly rare. The kilim borders with embroidered designs of rows of goats are most unusual and I know of only one other piece with this feature which was shown in HALI Edition 94 on page 122. The wools are soft and lustrous. Reference 292A and 292B. Size 71 x 73cms. each. 2ft.4in. x 2ft.5in. each. Euros 595 the pair. CLOSE UP showing row of goats which each bag has in the top kilim border.

BACHTIAR BAG FACE from the Zagros region. Bachtiar storage bags are often intricately embroidered and sometimes have a strip of knotted pile along the bottom because this adds strength to the lower section of the bag when it is stored upright in the dwellings which can be summer time tents or winter huts, depending on the best forage for their animals. When a bag becomes very worn the face panel, as here, is used as a cushion cover or food cloth. Reference 3176. Size 80 x 106 cms., or 34 x 42 inches. Euros 120.

BACHTIAR BAG FACE from the Zagros region. Bachtiar storage bags are often intricately embroidered and sometimes have a strip of knotted pile along the bottom because this adds strength to the lower section of the bag when it is stored upright in the dwellings which can be summer time tents or winter huts, depending on the best forage for their animals. When a bag becomes very worn the face panel, as here, is used as a cushion cover or food cloth. Reference 3177. Size 90 x 102 cms., or 36 x 40 inches. Euros 120.

KURDISH QUCHAN CHANTEH -- a small bag used to store precious items such as jewellery. It dates from the 1930s and is the work of a Kurdish group in the Quchan region of Kuh-i-Shah Jehan in north east Persia. The use of 10 colours in the design is most unusual. Extensive research by Wilfred Stanzer in his excellent book "Kordi" contains exhaustive and original information, including the dating and origin of this piece. He shows two artifacts, a balisht on page 151 and a salt bag on page 207 with very similar designs and colours. Reference 3296. Size 34 x 33 cms., or 14 x 13 inches. Euros 175.

THE SALT BAG FOR COMPARISON IN THE TEXT BOOK "KORDI".

GABBEH TRIBAL BAG probably woven by Lurs. Although the design is more Kurdish in appearance examination of the weave on the reverse, together with the colours, shows that this is a Gabbeh. It dates from the first half of the 20th century and is in excellent condition. Reference 2493. Size 40 x 40 cms, 17 x 17 inches (piled face). Euros 265.

GABBEH TRIBAL BAG probably woven by Lurs. Although the design is more Kurdish in appearance examination of the weave on the reverse, together with the colours, shows that this is a Gabbeh. It dates from the first half of the 20th century and is in excellent condition. Reference 2493. Size 40 x 40 cms, 17 x 17 inches (piled face). Euros 265. CLOSE UP.

MOROCCAN BERBER HIGH ATLAS BAG / PILLOW from the Berber group Ait Sergrouchan in the eastern High Atlas mountains close to the Algerian border. This is a very old piece with fine embroidered design embellished with many metal sequins. Very fine white cotton has been used for emphasis. This work is very little known but there is a piled rug from this tribe which has some elements of these designs and which is shown as Plate 34 in "Maroc - Tapis de Tribus". Reference 2641. Size 66 x 30cms. 2ft.2in. x 1ft. Euros 135.

MOROCCAN BERBER HIGH ATLAS BAG / PILLOW from the Berber group Ait Sergrouchan in the eastern High Atlas mountains close to the Algerian border. This is a very old piece with fine embroidered design embellished with many metal sequins. Very fine white cotton has been used for emphasis. This work is very little known but there is a piled rug from this tribe which has some elements of these designs and which is shown as Plate 34 in "Maroc - Tapis de Tribus". Reference 2641. Size 66 x 30cms. 2ft.2in. x 1ft. REVERSE.

MOROCCAN BERBER MIDDLE ATLAS SADDLE BAG which is a very rare example from the Berber tribe Beni M'guild. The deep purple used for the foundation kilim and which is plied together with deep indigo for the original fastening ropes is often used in the tribe's piled carpets. The bag faces are embellished with multi-coloured woollen decorations and the same wools have been used for the extensive tassel work. A spontaneous and unique tribal artifact. Reference 2642. Size 100 x 37cms. 3ft.3in. x 1ft.3in. without tassels. Euros 365.

MOROCCAN BERBER MIDDLE ATLAS SADDLE BAG which is a very rare example from the Berber tribe Beni M'guild. The deep purple used for the foundation kilim and which is plied together with deep indigo for the original fastening ropes is often used in the tribe's piled carpets. The bag faces are embellished with multi-coloured woollen decorations and the same wools have been used for the extensive tassel work. A spontaneous and unique tribal artifact. Reference 2642. Size 100 x 37cms. 3ft.3in. x 1ft.3in. without tassels. CLOSE UP.

BALUCH/BELOUCH tent bag, called a "Ballisht" and woven by Taimani people in north west Afghanistan. This group and their weavings is well described b R. D. Parsons in is authoratative book "The Carpets of Afghanistan". This is a very good example and is complete with original fastening loops. Reference 3061. Size 105 x 62 cms., or 3ft. 5ins. x 2ft. Euros 175.

TURKOMAN TENT BAG which is an old piece originating from the Saryk Turkomans in northern Afghanistan or Turkmenistan. The bag face is known as a "Jallor" and would have hung inside a yurt and used for the storage of small household items. The condition is excellent. The addition of beads and attractive bottom fringe indicate that great care was used in its construction. Reference 2755. Size (piled area) 16 x 65 cms., or 7 x 26 ins. Euros 260.

BERBER HIGH ATLAS TENT BAG which is the very fine work of the little known Ait bou Ichaouen Berbers in the eastern High Atlas Mountains which lie close to the border wth Algeria. There are at least ten major variations of flat weave techniques used by this Berber tribe which is extraordinary considering the primiive nature of both geography and lifestyle which prevail. Fortunately the weaving of both flatweaves and piled rugs was researched and documented in the book "Ait bou Ichaouen" by the husband and wife team of Alfred and Susanne Saulniers. This fine bag was probably one of a pair and given as a dowry gift. The small narrow opening along the top edge is just big enough to allow a hand to put items inside for storage. The design on the front is a lattice of hand tied knots. Reference 2820. Size 33 x 74cms. 13 x 29 inches. Euros 190.

BERBER HIGH ATLAS TENT BAG which is the very fine work of the little known Ait bou Ichaouen Berbers in the eastern High Atlas Mountains which lie close to the border wth Algeria. There are at least ten major variations of flat weave techniques used by this Berber tribe which is extraordinary considering the primiive nature of both geography and lifestyle which prevail. Fortunately the weaving of both flatweaves and piled rugs was researched and documented in the book "Ait bou Ichaouen" by the husband and wife team of Alfred and Susanne Saulniers. This fine bag was probably one of a pair and given as a dowry gift. The small narrow opening along the top edge is just big enough to allow a hand to put items inside for storage. The design on the front is a lattice of hand tied knots. Reference 2820. Size 13 x 29 inches. REVERSE.

MOROCCAN MIDDLE ATLAS DOUBLE SADDLE BAG from the region of Zemmour. PUBLISHED IN "ORIENTAL RUGS: AN ILLUSTRATED LEXICON OF MOTIFS, MATERIALS AND ORIGINS" by Peter Stone, page 316. The bag itself has a very fine embroidered design on both panels and has been further embellished by extensive use of metal sequins. See `Splendeurs du Maroc` - Musee Royal de l`Afrique Centrale, 1998, page 148. Reference 2012. Size 104 x 37cms, 3ft 5ins x 1ft 3ins, Euros 325.

MOROCCAN MIDDLE ATLAS DOUBLE SADDLE BAG from the region of Zemmour. PUBLISHED IN "ORIENTAL RUGS: AN ILLUSTRATED LEXICON OF MOTIFS, MATERIALS AND ORIGINS" by Peter Stone, page 316. The bag itself has a very fine embroidered design on both panels and has been further embellished by extensive use of metal sequins. See `Splendeurs du Maroc` - Musee Royal de l`Afrique Centrale, 1998, page 148. Reference 2012. Size 104 x 37cms, 3ft 5ins x 1ft 3ins. CLOSE UP

THIS DOUBLE BAG IS PUBLISHED on page 316 of this very important book.

Vats of dye in the city of Fez.

This is where I buy wool for my restoration studio.

MOROCCAN BERBER MIDDLE ATLAS SADDLE BAG which is of exceptional fineness and was probably woven as a dowry piece. It has a plain, fine kilim background upon which design has been embroidered and many sequins added. There is a similar piece attributed to the early to mid 20th century from the region of Zaine in the Middle Atlas which is colour plate 58 in "Arts and Crafts of Morocco". Reference 2550. Size 84 x 34cms. 2ft.9in. x 1ft.2in. CLOSE UP.

MOROCCAN BERBER MIDDLE ATLAS SADDLE BAG which is of exceptional fineness and was probably woven as a dowry piece. It has a plain, fine kilim background upon which design has been embroidered and many sequins added. There is a similar piece attributed to the early to mid 20th century from the region of Zaine in the Middle Atlas which is colour plate 58 in "Arts and Crafts of Morocco". Reference 2550. Size 84 x 34cms. 2ft.9in. x 1ft.2in. Euros 190.

BALOUCH / BELOUCH ARTIFACT BAG FACE. A finely woven example from the little known Jan Begi Belouch sub-tribe who are mostly found north of Ghorian which is a small town near Herat, north west Afghanistan. Very fine old examples of this type of bag have a wonderful portrayal of flowers, embroidered at both ends but they seldom survive intact as they have done here. The centre field is of undyed camel hair and other colours include shades of madder, indigo, cochineal and white. There is information on the Jan Begi on page 153 of the text book "The carpets of Afghanistan" by R.D. Parsons. This will make a good contribution to a collection. Reference 2464. Size 74 x 47cms. 2ft.5in. x 1ft.6in. CLOSE UP.

BALOUCH / BELOUCH ARTIFACT BAG FACE. A finely woven example from the little known Jan Begi Belouch sub-tribe who are mostly found north of Ghorian which is a small town near Herat, north west Afghanistan. Very fine old examples of this type of bag have a wonderful portrayal of flowers, embroidered at both ends but they seldom survive intact as they have done here. The centre field is of undyed camel hair and other colours include shades of madder, indigo, cochineal and white. There is information on the Jan Begi on page 153 of the text book "The carpets of Afghanistan" by R.D. Parsons. This will make a good contribution to a collection. Reference 2464. Size 74 x 47cms. 2ft.5in. x 1ft.6in. Euros 225.

I checked every single one of the bags and trappings brought by this man to the Monday morning market, but could not find anything really great.

Monday morning rug market in the Middle Atlas. Rugs have been gathered in the villages for the past week and now the negotiations begin. I work here frequently.

MOROCCAN BERBER TENT BAG. Known as "Anoual", this type of piled bag acts as a cushion or pillow and is usually part of a dowry. It is an old example in remarkably good condition with all original fastening loops intact. The bag is from the Berbers of Ait bou Ichaouen in the eastern High Atlas close to the border with Algeria. There are entirely different designs on each side. One is extremely rare and depicts a flight of Potez 25 bi-planes used by the French colonial government to bomb the rebellious Ait Hammou Berbers in the early 1930s. The Berbers have long memories. The incident and designs which commemorate it are described in the excellent research book "Ait bou Ichaouen". The second side depicts a large "evil eye" motif which in Berber superstition protects the owner from bad luck. This is an important and rare example of its kind. Reference 2664. Size 42 x 88 cms., or 17 x 35 inches. Euros 275.

MOROCCAN BERBER TENT BAG. Known as "Anoual", this type of piled bag acts as a cushion or pillow and is usually part of a dowry. It is an old example in remarkably good condition with all original fastening loops intact. The bag is from the Berbers of Ait bou Ichaouen in the eastern High Atlas close to the border with Algeria. There are entirely different designs on each side. One is extremely rare and depicts a flight of Potez 25 bi-planes used by the French colonial government to bomb the rebellious Ait Hammou Berbers in the early 1930s. The Berbers have long memories. The incident and designs which commemorate it are described in the excellent research book "Ait bou Ichaouen". The second side depicts a large "evil eye" motif which in Berber superstition protects the owner from bad luck. This is an important and rare example of its kind. Reference 2664. Size 42 x 88 cms., or 17 x 35 inches. Euros 275.