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Brown leather bookbinding consisting of a front cover, spine, back cover, and two-part pointed flap. All tooled with a detailed border and central pattern.
AKM385, Bookbinding, Front

© The Aga Khan Museum

Red leather interior of bookbinding consisting of a front cover, spine, back cover, and two-part pointed flap. All tooled with a simple golden border, with decorations in each corner and a matching pointed oval design in the centre of each cover.
AKM385, Bookbinding, Back

© The Aga Khan Museum

Leather bookbinding, partially folded over. Interior is red leather with golden tooled border and multi-coloured oval designs. Exterior is brown leather with a golden tooled border and interior decoration.
AKM385, Bookbinding, Detail

© The Aga Khan Museum

Click on the image to zoom

On Display
Bookbinding
  • Accession Number:AKM385
  • Place:Iran
  • Dimensions:36.1 x 22.4 cm
  • Date:ca. 1540–1600
  • Materials and Technique:leather, gilt stamped
  • Leather of various colours served a key function in Islamic bookbinding traditions, protecting precious manuscripts and providing a surface upon which intricate patterns could be applied. From the 15th century onwards, Iranian craftsmen popularized especially complex designs using large stamps.

Further Reading

 

For this binding, a stamp with a symmetrical pattern has been applied four times on each side to cover the central panels. The extension of the back cover (flap)—a signature of Islamic bookbinding—has been folded and brought to the upper cover to protect the edges of the papers.

Note: This online resource is reviewed and updated on an ongoing basis. We are committed to improving this information and will revise and update knowledge about this object as it becomes available.

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