Rug weaving is an ancient skill that dates back to prehistoric times. Even the oldest surviving rugs, such as the Pazyryk rug, demonstrate that carpets were woven far earlier. The woven carpet's art and craft have absorbed and merged various cultural traditions throughout its lengthy history.
Anatolian rugs date back to the thirteenth century, according to the earliest surviving samples. Since then, several kinds of carpets have been woven in court manufacturers and regional workshops, village residences, tribal communities and nomadic tents.
Anatolian carpets bear traces of Byzantine design; Turkic peoples migrating from Central Asia and Armenians, Caucasians and Kurdish tribes living in or relocating to Anatolia at various times in history contributed to their customary themes and ornamentation. The introduction of Islam and the development of Islamic art have had a significant impact on Anatolian rug design as can be seen from antique Anatolian rugs.
As a result, ornamentation and patterns reflect the region's political history and social variety. On the other hand, scientific research has yet to be able to link any given design aspect to a specific ethnic or regional heritage or even distinguish between nomadic and village design patterns.
Oriental rugs have been the topic of art-historical and scientific attention in the Western world. Antique Anatolian rugs were commonly featured in Renaissance paintings in Europe and were frequently depicted in a background of dignity, distinction, and richness. After the 13th century, political and commercial ties between Western Europe and the Islamic world grew stronger. When direct trade with the Ottoman Empire was established in the 14th century, all sorts of carpets were indiscriminately given the trade label "Turkish" carpets, regardless of where they were made. Rug weaving's complexity and cultural diversity were eventually appreciated.
Ertug and Kocabiyik created Anatolian Carpets. The most extravagant publication in the subject of oriental rugs from the second half of the twentieth century. Ertug & Kocabiyik contributed funds to conserving 140 unique antique Turkish carpets, nearly all of which had never been published before. Ahmet Ertug used large-format cameras to capture the carpets, resulting in minutely detailed photos that will provide Turkish carpet and textile enthusiasts with an unrivalled visual experience. Leading carpet and textile periodicals have given the book rave reviews.
With the arrival of synthetic dyes in the last third of the nineteenth century, the art and skill of the Anatolian rug underwent significant modifications. The mass manufacture of low-cost rugs aimed at commercial success had nearly wiped out the traditional heritage. Projects like the DOBAG Carpet Initiative have successfully resurrected the practice of Anatolian rug weaving using hand-spun, naturally-dyed wool and traditional motifs in the late twentieth century.