Dumbarton Oaks Microsite

Fragment of a Tunic Clavus

 
Accession numberBZ.1953.2.29
Attribution and Date
Egypt, 7th–10th c.
Measurements

H. (weft) 37.0 cm × W. (warp) 3.8 cm (14 9/16 × 1 1/2 in.)

Technique and Material

Tapestry weave in polychrome wool

Acquisition history

Crocker Collection, San Francisco, Mrs. William Henry Crocker (Ethel Willard Sperry Crocker, 1861–1934); Loaned to the San Francisco Museum of Art until 1953; Gift of Mrs. Andre de Limur (Ethel Mary Crocker de Limur, 1891–1964), Washington, DC, in 1953; Dumbarton Oaks Research Library and Collection, Washington, DC.

This narrow fragment is rendered in tapestry weave in beige, red, yellow-tan, blue, purple-grey, and tan. Some details are rendered in supplementary weft decoration in beige. A half-medallion at bottom is woven in purple-grey, and preserves a reinforced selvage. The design features abstracted plant and flower motifs interspersed with dots. The central field is framed by a wave-crest border.

The narrow shape of this fragment and the reinforcement at the bottom edge suggest it was once part of the clavus of a tunic. The schematic quality of the motifs, their rhythmic arrangement, and the color scheme of this piece all contribute to the design’s folk-like quality. Several fragments of a band with the same design are part of the frame of a pastiche in Riggisberg.Riggisberg, Abegg-Stiftung, inv. 1089: S. Schrenk, Textilien des Mittelmeerraumes aus spätantiker bis frühislamischer Zeit (Riggisberg, 2004), 436–38, no. 212.

—Elizabeth Dospěl Williams, May 2019

 

Notes

Accession numberBZ.1953.2.29
Attribution and Date
Egypt, 7th–10th c.
Measurements

H. (weft) 37.0 cm × W. (warp) 3.8 cm (14 9/16 × 1 1/2 in.)

Technique and Material

Tapestry weave in polychrome wool

Acquisition history

Crocker Collection, San Francisco, Mrs. William Henry Crocker (Ethel Willard Sperry Crocker, 1861–1934); Loaned to the San Francisco Museum of Art until 1953; Gift of Mrs. Andre de Limur (Ethel Mary Crocker de Limur, 1891–1964), Washington, DC, in 1953; Dumbarton Oaks Research Library and Collection, Washington, DC.

D. Thompson, “Catalogue of Textiles in the Dumbarton Oaks Collection” (unpublished catalogue, Washington, DC, 1976), no. 114.

Accession numberBZ.1953.2.29
Attribution and Date
Egypt, 7th–10th c.
Measurements

H. (weft) 37.0 cm × W. (warp) 3.8 cm (14 9/16 × 1 1/2 in.)

Technique and Material

Tapestry weave in polychrome wool

Acquisition history

Crocker Collection, San Francisco, Mrs. William Henry Crocker (Ethel Willard Sperry Crocker, 1861–1934); Loaned to the San Francisco Museum of Art until 1953; Gift of Mrs. Andre de Limur (Ethel Mary Crocker de Limur, 1891–1964), Washington, DC, in 1953; Dumbarton Oaks Research Library and Collection, Washington, DC.