• Imperial Threads Medallion Motifs

    Medallion Motifs

The medallion motif is generally circular or ogival in shape, and is often found centrally displayed within a greater design field. Regularly used as a decorative element in the Timurid period, it became a standard design format for artists in the Safavid and Ottoman periods in particular. Carpets, bookbindings and manuscript illumination regularly shared variations of this pattern, commonly featuring the medallion flanked by smaller pendants and repeated in quarter form in the corners of the pattern field.

Gold-Painted Lacquer Bookbinding

Safavid, Iran

16th century

Lacquer, leather, gilding and ink

33.3 x 53.5 cm


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