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Thu, Jul 1st, 2004 09:07:56 AM
Topic: Interesting News Item

This pottery fragment with a design that looks amazingly like the “curled-leaf” border found on some Turkmen ensi and main carpets was published today. It is part of a major news story because it comes from a hitherto unknown group of archaeological site located in a remote area of America. These sites were first found more than 50 years ago and, since then, have been kept quietly under wraps.

The owner of the 4,500 acre ranch in a very remote area of Utah found this shard and a host of other remains on his property and, to protect the integrity of his find and the people who inhabited this area long ago, never told anyone about it. Recently the now 75 year old rancher decided to “sell-out” and let the world know about his discoveries.

These sites belong to the Fremont culture that is considered by archaeologists as being the forbearer of many of the subsequent American Indian cultures and tribes.

These truly early Americans were hunters and gathers and the history of their occupation sites can be traced back to 4,500BC. At that time they were hunters and gatherers, while later they did develop simple agriculture and grew corn.

There are literally 100’s of site on this property, 225 have already been recorded. They offer the best evidence of the Fremont culture yet discovered. Plans are already in the works to find additional ones and to record the material finds. Some of these objects are lying on the ground and are in plain sight. Remains such as arrow heads, pottery and rock art panels have been recovered so far. One of these panels was etched with spirals and human figures with miniature hands shown among animal figures.

The design of the pottery fragment shown above bears such a strong relationship to the similar Turkmen icon that one can not help but harbor thoughts of some type of relationship between these very distant peoples. And, at the least, it proves the ancient history of this icon and its widespread dispersal.

No doubt more photographs of remains will be published now that this discovery has been made public and perhaps other highly interesting connections to the ancient Near Eastern and Western Asian cultures, who were indelibly involved in the development of the later cultures that produced the weavings known as Oriental rugs, will also emerge.

Author: jc
Thu, Jul 1st, 2004 09:07:56 AM

By the way some readers might be familiar with my published interpretation, which challenge the accepted interpretation of the design found on the pottery shard in Utah

Calling it a "curled leaf" is, in my opinion prosaic and, like many other such 'definitions' of the icons found on carpets (witness kaffel's "anchor" terms for instance), must be recognized as silly and worthless. I do grant they facilitate discussion but aside from that rugdom needs to elevate its sights and get down to some real work.

In the description of an ensi published in the Turkmen show

on the Weaving Art Museum website (http://www.weavingartmuseum.org/exh3_1.htm - you can paste this URL into your browser window or go to the homepage of WAMRI and click on the Turkmen Trappings Exhibition link) you will find my thoughts on this subject.

Clearly finding this iconic representation on pottery presupposes a prior history of usage and my interpretation follows this scheme. Interested readers are invited to decide for themselves how valid this idea might be.

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