Robes and Fabrics - Embroidered coat

Linen, silk embroidery, partially printed linen lining 
Size: H 117 cm, W 207 cm 
Origin and time: Iran, around 1600
Museum of Applied Arts, Vienna
Inv. No. T 4734

This bulky men’s shirt reaches the thighs half-way down and is embroidered with a pattern of figures, cypresses, blossoming trees and small water basins. The men sitting enthroned under canopies are flanked by a guard with a bow and quiver and a woman carrying a peacock. The coat is not preserved in its original state but the white-ground border is original. Similar depictions on textiles and miniatures of the 16th century reveal that this elaborately designed type of garment was widespread. The embroidery fragments in Washington and Paris with the legend of Yusuf and Zulaiha are dated around 1600. Similar oversized, expensive garments were the typical gifts admired by rulers and their courts and were usually not intended for wearing.