the first comprehensive survey of the vast and fascinating subject of Persian flatweaves, and in particular floor covers. Previous publications on the subject have largely been dealers' restricted catalogues focusing on a narrow geographical area or the weavings of a particular group, or sections in more general books. This book thus fills a huge gap in the oriental carpet and textile literature. Flatweaves have until recently been seen as merely the products and property of the poor. Since the late 1960s, however, growing attention has been paid to the best known type of flatweave, the gelim, revealing both its quality and variety. Other flatweaves, such as the palas, which is no less frequently found than the gelim, have scarcely been mentioned in any of the literature published so far, yet are shown in this work to be objects of great beauty and diversity. The book is divided into two parts. The first deals with the cultural background to the subject. Drawing on literary sources as well as surviving examples, it describes the long history of flatweaves, showing their relation to pileweaves. The second part of the book deals with the different types of flatweave in turn: gelim, palas, weft-wrapped weaves, zilu and jajim. It also covers the range of uses to which they were put.