One of the most notable and frequently applied examples of Iranian-based motifs is Herati, also known as Mahi or Fish Design.
The pattern most probably takes its name from the city of Herat in the Northwestern Afghanistan where it could have been developed, yet some scholars attribute its creation to the Turks. Such design comprises of a stylized or naturally rendered rosette enclosed within a rhombus, surrounded by four acanthus leaves and sometimes a number of tiny flower heads around the sides and at the corners. The alternative names for Herati – Mahi or Fish – derive from the before mentioned acanthus leaves whose serrated edges very often make them look like fish. Actually, the word “mahi” in Farsi, the Persian language, means “fish”, which would indicate Iran as the country of Herati’s origin.
Herati usually occurs as the all-over repeated main field design or a part of the intricate foliage but it happens that the pattern also accentuates the borders. There are no designated hues so each Mahi rug’s color palette is totally dependent on the artistic sense of a weaver. The fish pattern is a symbol of auspiciousness and it is believed to bring good luck to a household. A Herati rug is a classic instance of the Persian sublime craftsmanship. If you would like to find out more about Persian rugs, do not hesitate to contact us by email DD@DorisLeslieBlau.com or call 212-517-9178. You are more than welcome to visit our gallery located on 306 East 61st Street, 7th Floor, New York and if by any chance you are visiting the capital, come to The Washington Design Centre at 1099 14th Street, N.W. Suite 325. We assure that our consultants will be at your disposal, serving with their expertise and kind advice.