In the Christian world, worshippers are accustomed to the idea of a priesthood and in the “high” church are familiar with rituals involving religious accessories such as candles, crucifixes, and priestly robes. Ecclesiastical vestments generally have merited the use of the finest materials, and as a result have become a valuable source for the study of historically important textiles


Islam, on the other hand, has no such attachment to religious accoutrements. Of the five pillars of Islam— the profession of faith, prayer, giving alms, fasting, and pilgrimage to Mecca—only the need for a clean place to pray may require some kind of equipment. For this, many items can be pressed into service, including a piece of cloth, a sheepskin, or even a garment. Nevertheless, through the ages, the practice of using a rug specially made for the purpose of prayer has emerged. These have long been popular as souvenirs, and as collectibles, and have been produced in great variety over a long period of time.