Three Camels to Smyrna
Antony Wynn

Three Camels to Smyrna

The OCM was, in its day, by far the biggest manufacturer and exporter of oriental carpets of all. This book explores the recent history of the Near and Middle East as seen through the eyes of the men and women involved in the carpet trade. The author observed carpet weaving at first hand when he was the OCM buyer in Iran from 1972-6. Using the carpets as a connecting thread, he takes us through revolutions, wars and economic crises in Turkey, Iran, Afghanistan, India, Tibet, Europe and America to show how, long before ‘globalisation’ became a word, seemingly unrelated political and economic events affected the lives of all those involved in the trade: from the weavers in their remote villages to the city merchants and the financiers in Europe who backed them. Few people have any idea of the dramas gone through by those who worked to bring oriental carpets, woven in the turbulent countries of the East, to the tranquil living rooms of the West. This book brings it all home.

Book Details:

  • Author: Antony Wynn
  • Published Year: 2009
  • Rights Sold
    • UK: Hali Publications

Antony Wynn

Antony Wynn read Persian and Turkish at Balliol, spending a year at Shiraz University as part of the course.1972-1976: Based at Hamadan in western Iran, working as a buyer of Persian carpets for the Oriental Carpet Manufacturing Company, travelling all over Iran.1976-1978: Moved to Gonbad-i Kavus, on the Turkoman border of Iran, to run a country racecourse and introduce the Jockey Club Rules of racing to the Turkoman, who were not used to any sort of rules.1979-1991: After training as a slaughterman and butcher in Australia and New Zealand, represented the Vestey company in the Middle East,...
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Book Reviews

  • "The author weaves the company's history into the political background with skill and his feel for local people and realities informs every page of this admirable book."
    Asian Affairs