Dumbarton Oaks Microsite

Roundel (Orbiculus)

 
Accession numberBZ.1973.36
Attribution and Date
Egypt, 7th–10th c.
Measurements

H. (warp) 15.2 cm × W. (weft) 17.5 cm (6 × 6 7/8 in.)

Technique and Material

Tapestry weave in polychrome wool and undyed linen

Acquisition history

Collection of Royall Tyler (1884–1953), Paris; Gift of his son, William R. Tyler (1910–2003), Washington, DC, in 1972; Dumbarton Oaks Research Library and Collection, Washington, DC.

This squarish medallion is woven in tapestry weave in beige, red, yellow, light blue, dark blue, and purple. A lattice design of flower buds shaped like hearts crisscrosses the central field, turning into four-petal flowers at the lattice’s intersections. Spade-shaped trees appear between the arms of the lattice and feature pointy stemmed fruit, perhaps pomegranates. The medallion’s border design comprises a running pattern of spindly vegetal motifs in beige against a red ground.

This medallion has been cut from its surrounding fabric, and likely comes from a garment. The warp is plied, giving the surface of the weft-faced tapestry weave a coarse, textured quality. Two pieces sharing the same rectangular shape and design layout are held in Berlin.Staatliche Museen zu Berlin, Skulpturensammlung und Museum für Byzantinische Kunst, inv. 4637 and 9084, in O. Wulff and W. F. Volbach, Spätantike und koptische Stoffe aus ägyptischen Grabfunden in den Staatlichen Museen, Kaiser-Friedrich-Museum, Ägyptisches Museum, Schliemann-Sammlung (Berlin, 1926), 117, plate 115.

—Elizabeth Dospěl Williams, May 2019

 

Notes

Accession numberBZ.1973.36
Attribution and Date
Egypt, 7th–10th c.
Measurements

H. (warp) 15.2 cm × W. (weft) 17.5 cm (6 × 6 7/8 in.)

Technique and Material

Tapestry weave in polychrome wool and undyed linen

Acquisition history

Collection of Royall Tyler (1884–1953), Paris; Gift of his son, William R. Tyler (1910–2003), Washington, DC, in 1972; Dumbarton Oaks Research Library and Collection, Washington, DC.

Washington, DC, Dumbarton Oaks Research Library and Collection, Ornament: Fragments of Byzantine Fashion, September 10, 2019—January 5, 2020.

Accession numberBZ.1973.36
Attribution and Date
Egypt, 7th–10th c.
Measurements

H. (warp) 15.2 cm × W. (weft) 17.5 cm (6 × 6 7/8 in.)

Technique and Material

Tapestry weave in polychrome wool and undyed linen

Acquisition history

Collection of Royall Tyler (1884–1953), Paris; Gift of his son, William R. Tyler (1910–2003), Washington, DC, in 1972; Dumbarton Oaks Research Library and Collection, Washington, DC.

D. Thompson, “Catalogue of Textiles in the Dumbarton Oaks Collection” (unpublished catalogue, Washington, DC, 1976), no. 85.

Accession numberBZ.1973.36
Attribution and Date
Egypt, 7th–10th c.
Measurements

H. (warp) 15.2 cm × W. (weft) 17.5 cm (6 × 6 7/8 in.)

Technique and Material

Tapestry weave in polychrome wool and undyed linen

Acquisition history

Collection of Royall Tyler (1884–1953), Paris; Gift of his son, William R. Tyler (1910–2003), Washington, DC, in 1972; Dumbarton Oaks Research Library and Collection, Washington, DC.