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Posted on: April 17, 2017

The Meaning of Color

Similar to a painting, each traditional Persian carpet has a unique story to tell. The story is interpreted through the design motifs, as well as the colors that the weaver uses to paint her picture. Continue reading to learn the symbolic meaning behind the colors found in this ancient handicraft!

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In Persian history, the meaning found behind color originates from ancient astrological understandings. Different colors can be connected to certain planets, elements, and even the days of the week. At their core, however, each color is meant to evoke a particular feeling for those who walk upon a carpet.

 

The color red, one of the most common colors in traditional Persian carpets, represents a strong life force, or high levels of energy. Similarly to western symbolism, it is also the color of love. This bold color is meant to excite its viewer, increasing blood flow through the body.

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Blue, another common color in Persian carpet history,  symbolizes stability and solitude. This is because the color was thought to have a calming effect.

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Green is connected to peace and hope because the color is said to invoke harmony. This is because green symbolizes life or rebirth in the natural world. After the introduction of Islam in Persia, however, the color also became associated with the Prophet Mohammed. As such, it was used on particular occasions in areas with the least foot traffic.

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Bright yellow is related to light and feelings of joy, as it is the color of the sun. The shade of gold, on the other hand, is connected to the royal class because it symbolized wealth and power.

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The spectrum created with indigo, from deep purple to midnight blue, is used to represent spirituality or enlightenment.

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Brown tones can represent humility as well as fertility. This is because the color has a direct association with the earth, a stabilizing force in nature.

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Understanding the symbolism behind colors helps begin the process of deducing the story and meaning behind a Persian carpet. With these tools, check out the antique collection on our website and on our 1stDibs page to start learning the secrets of centuries old designs!