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

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

Browse: 1 object

Reference URL


Send e-mail

Contact us about this object

Send e-mail

Send to a friend

Textile fragment from a trouser leg


    • currently in research collection

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.


Publications online

  • The Newberry Collection of Islamic Embroideries by Ruth Barnes and Marianne Ellis

    The Newberry Collection of Islamic Embroideries

    Diagonal bands with S-shapes and small squares, alternating in colour between blue and medium brown; in addition there is a pair of very narrow bands, one blue, one brown, made up from two single lines, but following the same diagonal. The bands have a border with brown triangles and stylized plants at the top, and a wider border with chevrons at the bottom. The embroidery fills the background.

    The fragment belonged to a garment, probably trousers. A seam along two sides and a hem at the base suggest the shape of pantaloon bottoms.
  • Embroideries and Samplers from Islamic Egypt by Marianne Ellis

    Embroideries and Samplers from Islamic Egypt

    The shape of this fragment suggests that it is from the lower end of a trouser leg that narrowed towards the ankle. The sides are turned in and hemmed where they curve inwards to meet a band that forms a cuff, but there is no evidence of any fastenings, so presumably they were left open at the bottom. As in some examples of Ottoman and Iranian trousers, the amount of the embroidery was decided by the length of the over-garment because only the parts that would show were decorated. The diagonal stripes are filled with a repeating pattern of S-shapes and tiny squares. Geometric S-shapes feature on one of the diagonal bands recorded on a sampler, No.13 [EAEA1984.495], but here they are in reserve against pattern-darned backgrounds worked in red and blue silk alternately. Many patterns based on S- and Z-shapes and worked in counted stitches appear on Mamluk embroidery throughout the period. Some are simple repeating patterns as seen here, and others are intricate, involving the use of several different stitches including openwork. Eventually S- and Z-shaped motifs became part of the European design vocabulary as, for instance, those seen in 16th century pattern books, Spanish, German, Italian and Dutch embroideries of the 16th and 17th centuries and included in band patterns on 17th century English samplers.

© 2013 University of Oxford - Ashmolean Museum