© Islamic Arts Museum Malaysia © Islamic Arts Museum Malaysia

Name of Object:



Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

Holding Museum:

Islamic Arts Museum Malaysia


c. Hegira 1000-1200 / c. AD 1600-1801

Type of object:


Museum Inventory Number:


Material(s) / Technique(s):

Gold stamped leather


35.3 x 24cm

Period / Dynasty:





The exterior cover of this binding is made from brown leather with gilded motif. The main panel of the binding is decorated with scalloped almond-shaped medallion with two pendants decorated with arabesque and hatayi motifs, and cloud scrolls. Four angulated corner-pieces demarcate the panel with similar decorations. A finely gilded border with S-shaped motif edge the binding. The fore-edge flap is decorated with four cartouches painted in gold lines with small floral decoration. Part of the decoration on the binding is repeated on the flap with a smaller medallion sits at the apex. The inner part of the binding is decorated in simple designs, yet retain the feel of the centre and corner-piece concept. An obloid-shaped medallion, a variant, adorns the centre of the inner cover with a set of pendants. The medallion, with scalloped edge, is filled with gold dust, as so the pendants. Edging the binding is similar motif as found on the outer cover. The same goes to the decorative piece on the inner part of the flap, which has a small scalloped almond-shaped medallion at the meeting point filled with gold dust. Contacts between dynasties were known to affect artistic developments. Turkish bindings followed the Persian decorative theme; central medallion, corner-pieces and a decorated border until the 17th century. Nevertheless, the artists created their own particular and combination motifs identifiable as Turkish.

Selected bibliography:

Haldane, D., Islamic bookbindings in the Victoria and Albert Museum, London: World of Islam Festival Trust in association with the Victoria and Albert Museum, 1983: 137.
Sarre, Friedrich Paul Theodor, Islamic bookbindings, London: Kegan Paul, 1923.
Scheper, Karin, The technique of Islamic bookbinding methods, materials and regional varieties, Leiden: Brill, 2015.

Citation of this web page:

 "Bookcover" in Explore Islamic Art Collections , Museum With No Frontiers, 2019. http://www.museumwnf.org/thematicgallery/thg_galleries/database_item.php?itemId=objects;EPM;my;Mus21;30;en&id=leatherwork

MWNF Working Number: MY1 30

Related Content

 Artistic Introduction

Islamic Dynasties / Period

On display in

MWNF Galleries


As PDF (including images) As Word (text only)