The Middle East

Mamluk Fragment, 13th-16th C

Mamluk Fragment, silk on linen, 13th -16th Century


When dealing with embroidery in the Middle East in the pre-16th Century period, you are dealing with a very diverse religious and cultural mileau. Even within one country, such as Egypt, you at various times are dealing with the Christian Coptic tradition as well as the Islamic Fatimid and Mamluk dysnasties. All of these groups produced distinctive embroidery traditions.

In other parts of the area, the Persian empire produced several styles of embroidery of varying uses. And closer to Europe, Turkey under both Christian Byzantium and Muslim Ottoman produced many great works in textiles.