During 19th century a wave of orientalism culminated and lots of orientalists departed for the eastern lands with various motivations. They started to research and write on the eastern societies, cultures, civilizations and arts, including carpets. Historiography, study of motives and designs and weave-geography of eastern carpets were of the most important points orientalists focused on. This paper is to recognize and study on the orientalists’ resources and their approach to the Iranian carpet and also to find their faults. This is a documentary research and its method is descriptive and analytical. The statistical population is the orientalists’ available written works (books, articles and exhibition catalogues) which are written between 1850 and 1950. The method of analysis is qualitative. The research’s results indicate orientalists’ approaches are categorized into two basic groups (Berlin and Wien Schools), but their written works cannot be assumed as historiography, but as historical sources. The main defects in orientalists’ studies are: their mere focus on museum carpets and library studies, inattention to empirical research, assuming their data and results as definite facts, determining false weave places for carpets, faults in dating, inattention to the carpets’ origins and cultural grounds. However, the Iranian researchers are deeply influenced by the orientalists’ researches and historiographies, and this paper focuses on these influences.
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