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Jorabs

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Jorabs

Dagestan-style jorabs
Dagestan-style jorabs

Jorabs are multicolored socks with intricate patterns, knitted from the toe-up. They are usually worn in such a way as to display rich decoration.

Contents

  • Etymology 1
  • Materials 2
  • Geography 3
  • Shape 4
  • Tools 5
  • Books 6
  • References 7

Etymology

The word "Jorabs" originates from Persian جوراب (jourab) which has a general meaning of “socks”. Other known variants of the term: “çorap” (Turkish), “чорап” (Bulgarian, Macedonian) “charape” (Serbian), “Corab” (Azerbaijani), “Čarapa” (Croatian), and “Ҷӯроб” (Tadzhik).

The same concept is also known by such local terms as “kyulyutar” in Lezgin, “tturs” in Tsakhur, and “unq’al” in Avar languages of Dagestan.

Materials

Jorabs are made of wool, silk, nylon or sometimes cotton. Other materials include acrylic and blends of wool and cotton.

Jorabs with Bosnian toe

Geography

Jorabs are found in Central Asia (Turkmenistan, Tajikistan, and Afghanistan), Caucasus (Dagestan, Georgia, Azerbaijan, and Armenia); also in Iran, and mountain areas of Pakistan. They are also known in the Balkan countries: Albania, Bosnia, Bulgaria, Greece, Macedonia, Serbia, and Turkey. England

Shape

Jorabs can be knee-high, regular length, ankle-length, or made as slippers. An early predecessor of jorabs, a knee-high 12th century sock with toe-up construction and intricate patterns, was found in Egypt with possible origin in India.

Tools

Jorabs are usually knitted with 5 double-pointed needles. Bosnian and in old Tadzhik socks feature a combination of knitting and crochet techniques. Tadzhik jorabs (Pamirs area) can be made by using crochet technique only. Some ethnic groups from the Caucasus knit jorabs with 3 double-pointed bow-shaped needles.

Books

Kenan Ozbel Knitted stockings from Turkish villages.

Priscilla Gibson-Roberts Ethnic Socks & Stockings: A Compendium of Eastern Design & Technique

Anna Zilboorg Simply Socks: 45 Traditional Turkish Patterns to Knit

Betsy Harrell Anatolian Knitting Designs: Sivas Stocking Patterns Collected in an Istanbul Shantytown

References

Traditional Macedonian Costumes

Bulgarian ethnic socks

From Carpets to Jourabs

Silk socks from Kurdistan

Azerbaijan Carpets

Balkan Socks

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