Explore the beauty and variety of Eastern Art objects on display in the Textiles gallery.
'In the name of God. Praise be to God. The favour of God to the servant of God, Abu’l-Abbas, the Imam, al-Mu’tadid bi’llah, Commander of the Faithful, may God strengthen him. This is what he ordered, may God glorify him, to be made in the workshop of Tinnis, at the hands of ‘Ubaid Allah, son of Sulaiman, in the year 288.'
(Tiraz inscription, AD 901)
Writing on cloth may honour or protect the wearer, or identify the owner. Islamic tiraz textiles were robes of honour with embroidered or woven inscriptions, presented by the Caliph in recognition of office and loyalty. They record the date and place of making, as well as the name of the ruler. These wearable markers of distinction played an important part in early Islamic societies.
Wishes of good health for the wearer were often included on dress cloth. Pseudo-inscriptions which only look like writing, but cannot be read, were also common, both in embroideries and in Indian printed textiles made for the Islamic market.
European samplers are commonly signed with the embroiderer’s name, her age, and the date of completion.
Objects may have since been removed or replaced from a gallery. Click into an individual object record to confirm whether or not an object is currently on display. Our object location data is usually updated on a monthly basis, so contact the Jameel Study Centre if you are planning to visit the museum to see a particular Eastern Art object.