A beautiful carpet from ancient central Persia in natural silk with a medallion pattern. It has been dated to the second half of the 16th century and was possibly produced in a royal factory in Kashan during the Safavid dynasty. Composed of a red ground filled with a decoration of palmettes, rosettes and plant scrolls and a quadrilobed green medallion with a four-pointed star flower in the centre. Stylized motifs of coils, flowers and clouds adorn the corners, borders and surrounds. Only twenty such pieces of this typology are known to exist. The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York possesses a carpet with similar characteristics.