- motifs, designs, symbols

There are many many varieties of every motif used in kilims. In some countries there appears not to be a great significance attached to motifs and symbols found in kilims, whereas in other countries the meanings are deep rooted in their folklore and superstition. The following motifs are just a few examples of those found in Anatolian kilims, with a brief description of their significance to Turkish weavers:

BOND Symbolises the unity of people and the desire to retain that link.


BIRD Heralld of love, wisdom and strength.

EARTH MOTHER (Elibelinde) Mother Goddess, fertility, the wish to bear children.

EARRING Expresses the weaver's desire to marry.

EVIL EYE Looks can say it all, this motif protects against the power of the evil eye.

CROSS Another symbol which guards against the power of the evil eye.

HUMAN FIGURE The desire to create life, and to have children.

RAMS HORN Symbol of fertility, gives power to the male.

RUNNING WATER The significance of water is that it is the essence of life.

SCORPION Derived from the dragon motif, which is guardian of the Tree of Life and secrets of the Universe.

STAR The Jewel of Mohammed. Signifies wisdom, happiness and fertility. Enclosed within the star is the ying yang motif, denoting balance.

TREE OF LIFE Symbolises the wish of man for eternal life for the soul.

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