The ascertainment of the authenticity of carpets and tapestries



It is relatively easy for an expert to tell whether in all likelihood a carpet is new, old or antique.
The establishing of exact dates, for really antique objects, is founded however more on sensations or opinions than technical or historical bases, as the raw materials, the dyes, the knotting technique and even the designs have not undergone significant change over the centuries.

Old Oriental carpets were often the only elements of furnishing, their centre represented the centre of the daily life and therefore the most worn areas are in this section.
Every kind of specific use leaves a specific sign of wear, especially in prayer rugs where damage can be observed in the areas on which the knees rest. (1)

The main starting points for evaluating the age of a rug or carpet are the following:

  1. Stylistic and technical comparison with antique carpets of certain dating.

  2. Distinction between hand-knotted unique items and machine-woven industrial products.

  3. Examination of the deterioration of the colours.

  4. Observation of the signs of wear and their meaning. (Photo)