Eastern Art Online, Yousef Jameel Centre for Islamic and Asian Art

Ashmolean − Eastern Art Online, Yousef Jameel Centre for Islamic and Asian Art

Newberry Collection

Explore Percy and Essie Newberry's important collection of textiles including Islamic embroideries and Indian block-printed fragments.

Detail of block-printed textile fragment with band of rosettes and flowers, Gujarat, 1250-1350 (Museum No: EA1990.140)

Collection trails: 8 objects

Show search help

Search Help

Online trails offer additional information about key Eastern Art collections at the Ashmolean.

They focus on areas of particular strength in the collection, providing introductory information about associated people and objects.

From short biographies of artists and collectors, to explorations of how styles and techniques developed over time, the trails highlight the stories that our collections tell best.

Reference URL


Send e-mail

Contact us about this object

Send e-mail

Send to a friend

Textile fragment with star and pseudo-inscription


    • Lower ground floor | Room 5 | Textiles

Objects are sometimes moved to a different location. Our object location data is usually updated on a monthly basis. Contact the Jameel Study Centre if you are planning to visit the museum to see a particular object on display, or would like to arrange an appointment to see an object in our reserve collections.


Collection trails

Publications online

  • Embroideries and Samplers from Islamic Egypt by Marianne Ellis

    Embroideries and Samplers from Islamic Egypt

    The immediate impression given by this fragment is that its geometric design is remarkably like the Roman mosaic floor patterns based on stars within squares. The design can also be compared to the more elaborate compositions with eight-pointed stars within octagons seen on 16th century Mamluk carpets. It is intriguing to see the way the design has been built up from the central star within an octagon, within another square surrounded by a border and then multiplied to form a larger pattern. On closer inspection we realise that the repeating motif in the border is ultimately derived from kufic script. It is similar to that seen on fragment No.18 [EA1993.76] and could be derived from the Arabic words for "health" or possibly from "Allah".

    The embroidery is worked in spaced cross stitch and close counted herringbone stitch as seen on No.39 [EA1993.153]. Here it functions as both a line and a filling stitch and is found on a wide range of designs broadly similar to those worked in pattern darning and double running during the Mamluk period.
  • The Newberry Collection of Islamic Embroideries by Ruth Barnes and Marianne Ellis

    The Newberry Collection of Islamic Embroideries

    A central eight-pointed blue star is set in a red square with a lattice border, surrounded by pseudo Kufic motifs placed alternately.

    The pseudo inscription of the border is derived from al-mulk, 'the kingdom'.

    The textile has a radiocarbon date of 1189 Ad +/- 34, with a calibrated range of 1210 to 1300. It is likely to be of Mamluk date.

© 2013 University of Oxford - Ashmolean Museum