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Textile Fragment Depicting a Speckled Deer

Arts of the Islamic World

A speckled deer or gazelle nibbles on leaves under a canopy of large fronds in this textile fragment. The fine weave and relatively light weight of the piece suggest it was part of a domestic textile, perhaps a coverlet.

The deer was a popular motif in Egypt, inherited from the Late Antique artistic vocabulary. In early Islamic times the animal symbolized good luck, a visual equivalent of the expression “good wishes,” which was inscribed in Arabic on many early and medieval-era Islamic objects.
MEDIUM Wool and linen
DATES 868–905
PERIOD Tulunid Period
DIMENSIONS 14 x 8 1/2in. (35.6 x 21.6cm) Frame: 2 x 20 x 14 in. (5.1 x 50.8 x 35.6 cm)  (show scale)
CREDIT LINE Gift of the Ernest Erickson Foundation, Inc.
MUSEUM LOCATION This item is not on view
CAPTION Textile Fragment Depicting a Speckled Deer, 868–905. Wool and linen, 14 x 8 1/2in. (35.6 x 21.6cm). Brooklyn Museum, Gift of the Ernest Erickson Foundation, Inc., 86.227.96. Creative Commons-BY (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, 86.227.96_PS1.jpg)
IMAGE overall, 86.227.96_PS1.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph, 2007
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