Millefleur

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Tapestry "The Triumph of Death, or the Three Fates" with a typical mille-fleurs background, Flemish, c. 1510-20.

Millefleur or mille-fleur (French mille-fleurs, literally "thousand flowers") refers to a background made of many small flowers and plants. It was an especially popular motif in tapestry and other applied arts and crafts during the Middle Ages in Europe.

Mille-fleurs style was most popular in late 15th and early 16th century French and Flemish tapestry, with the best known examples including The Lady and the Unicorn and The Hunt of the Unicorn. The term is also used to describe Oriental rugs with a similar design, originally Persian but later produced in much of the Middle East and Mughal India – the medieval European style may have been influenced by Persian miniatures or carpets.


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