Graduate Papers

Textiles in Global Trade: Sasanian Textiles and its Distinctive Motifs

Maryam Jalali

Although a fairly unknown dynasty, the Sasanian dynasty of Iran established itself as a period for creativity and high-art. A contemporary to Christian Rome and the Byzantine Empire, Sasanian Iran managed to influence much in science and art. Of interest is their trade in textile, of which examples are practically non-existent due to unfavorable environment and rapid decay. Bitter enemies of the Romans and immersed in all sorts of rivalries, this dynasty stands fundamentally unique from others, while very little remains of their heritage, as an art historian I have tried to highlight their unique understanding of motifs and designs, as well as how the rest of the ancient world gained access to them.