An age old Chinese design five dragon carpet, all five-clawed ‘Imperial’ dragons, from the Ningxia region and made pre-1900 some time in the latter part of the 1800’s / 19th century. The four corner dragons are portrayed side-on or ‘in profile’ frolicking in stylised clouds while clutching at the ‘precious jewel’ or ‘flaming pearl, depending on your interpretation of same; while the center dragon is shown face-on looking directly at the viewer. The end design shows the rolling waves with frothy spraylets coming off, and a stylised version of the sacred Mount Meru at the center. The outer border along the selvedge’s is plain dark brown wool, then a thin strip of blue and then a simple thin white strip inner ‘border’, while the center field is a magnificent abrashed blue. The warp and weft are both cotton, seemingly hand spun, and the dyes appear to be all natural. The carpet is in very good condition for its age with only some minor pile wear through the center. This has been in the hands of one private collector since the early 1970’s and is the first time on the market since then. A beautiful carpet that would suit a collector.