About this objectThis patterned silk fragment with a green ground and greenish-yellow pattern possibly shows the mythical creature from Zoroastrianism, the simurgh or senmurv, enclosed in a roundel of pearls. The pearl roundel design probably originated in Sogdian central Asia and spread throughout the Eurasia world.
The fragment comes from the same weaving as two pieces associated with the relics of Helena (d. c.330) at St Leu in Paris, now in the Musee des Arts Decoratifs. It is woven in a weft-faced compound twill, often called samite, a weave commonly used outside east Asia from the medieval period.
Date Made7th to 8th century
Place MadeCentral Asia
Subject and Association KeywordsRelics
Subject and Association KeywordsSilk
Subject and Association DescriptionLearn More: Baker 1995; Compareti 2021; From Nara to Nancy; Woolley 1988.