"Wonderful reproductions of the best known carpets"

Sarre, Friedrich / Trenkwald, Hermann. Alt-orientalische Teppiche.

Vienna & Leipzig, Anton Schroll & Co. and Karl W. Hiersemann for the Österreichisches Museum für Kunst und Industrie, 1926-1928.

Imperial folio (440 x 605 mm). 2 vols. bound as four. 21, (3), (29) pp. (31) pp. 43, (28) pp. (32) pp. With 120 collotype plates (67 colour and 53 black & white, 7 of the latter double-page) by Max Jaffé, and 14 wood-engraved full-page illustrations on the integral leaves. Later half calf with cloth sides.


First and only edition of "the most important recent publication with wonderful reproductions of the best known carpets" (Ettinghausen 1936), here in very good condition, rebound in four high-quality half calf volumes. The project was initiated by the Austrian Museum for Art and Industry, which had previously published two other works on carpets: "Orientalische Teppiche" (1892) and "Altorientalische Teppiche" (1908). The present work by Sarre & Trenkwald has far more and better illustrations than the earlier works, with 120 fine collotype plates. The authors were highly regarded authorities in the field of Islamic art, especially Friedrich Sarre (1865-1945), "without doubt one of the most influential figures regarding the scholarly formation of Islamic art" (Kadoi/Szanto). He was the director of the Museum für Islamische Kunst in Berlin and responsible for the formation of the "most comprehensive collection of Islamic art outside the Islamic world".

The work is characterized by an emphasis on the technique of production. The plates that depict carpets in colour and black & white are preceded by a descriptive page that is sometimes illustrated with a schematic explanation of the knotting technique used for making the carpet. The first part, by Hermann Trenkwald, with 60 plates, is entirely devoted to carpets in the world-renowned collection of the Austrian Museum. The second part, by Sarre, also comprising 60 plates, covers the greatest carpets in other collections throughout the world, including private collections such as that of Baron Maurice Rothschild.

Corners slightly bumped, but in very good condition.


R. Ettinghausen, Kali (1936), p. 110. Kadoi & Szanto, The Shaping of Persian Art (2014), p. 227.