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Photo credit: Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Art, Cornell University

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Title: Prayer rug
Date: early 19th Century
Medium: Wool
Dimensions: 61 x 31 7/8 in. (155 x 81 cm)
Credit Line: Gift of Banoo and Jeevak Parpia
Object Number: 2008.019
Label Text: Prayer is one of the five pillars of Islam, along with alms-giving, fasting, pilgrimage, and the remembrance of God. Devout Muslims pray five times a day and may do so communally in a mosque or privately just about anywhere. Prayer rugs facilitate the practice, which involves prostration, and typically feature an architec-tonic motif that represents the mihrab, the niche in a mosque located at the center of the wall that faces toward Mecca.

Beshir rugs were made in towns for use by settled communities, and thus are outside the tribal Turkmen tradition. This is a classic example of a Beshir prayer rug, featuring pomegranates within the arch-like design.

NOTE: This electronic record is compiled from historic documentation which may not reflect the Johnson Museum's complete or current knowledge of the object. Review and refinement of such records is ongoing.