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Bukhara rug: The rug not made in Bukhara

English: Tolkuchka Bazaar, Ashgabat, Turkmenistan

English: Tolkuchka Bazaar, Ashgabat, Turkmenistan (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

When you say Bukhara you might think of Uzbekistan.
Although it is now the capital of the Bukhara Province (viloyat) of Uzbekistan, before the creation of the Tajik Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic as a part of Uzbekistan, in 1924, it was a city in Tajikistan, located on the ancient Silk Road.
So you might think it’s a rug made by Tajiks.
Wrong again.

The city of Bukhara, Uzbekistan, became prominent as a seat of Islamic scholarship in the early medieval period. During the first half of the 20th century its name was applied to rugs of various Turkmen tribes, but few Turkmen live around Bukhara, whose population is made up of Uzbeks and Tajiks. Some Turkmen rugs, particularly those of the Ersari tribe, may well have reached Western markets through Bukhara, but the best-known textiles actually produced within the city are the embroidered suzanis of the Uzbeks.
Bukhara rug, Bukhara also spelled Bokhara, Uzbek Bukharo, name
erroneously given to floor coverings made by various Turkmen tribes.


A Turkmen rug (or Turkmen carpet) is a type of handmade floor-covering textile traditionally originating in Central Asia (especially in Turkmenistan and Afghanistan). It is useful to distinguish between the original Turkmen tribal rugs and the rugs produced in large numbers for export mainly in Pakistan and Iran today.
The rugs produced in large numbers for export in Pakistan and Iran and sold under the name of Turkmen rugs are mostly made of synthetic colors, with cotton warps and wefts and wool pile. They have little in common with the original Turkmen tribal rugs. In these export rugs, various patterns and colors are used, but the most typical is that of the Bukhara design, which derives from the Tekke main carpet.

»Turkmen rug

Now you know:
Bukhara is not in Tajikistan, but in Uzbekistan.
And Bukhara rugs are not made in Uzbekistan, but in Turkmenistan.
And they’re called Turkmen rugs.
No biggie!

* The Tribal Gol in Turkmen Carpets


* Bokhara – Persian Rugs


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