May 20, 2008
May 20, 2008

Albarello with Pseudo-Kufic Letters

Albarello with Pseudo-Kufic Letters


Tin-glazed earthenware (maiolica)

Overall: 21.6 cm (8 1/2 in.)

In memory of Mr. and Mrs. Henry Humphreys, gift of their daughter Helen 1945.28

Did you know?

Jars with this cylindrical shape were often used to store spices and herbs as well as pigments. The script on this jar doesn't help in determining its original contents; the text-like lines are completely decorative.


The Muslim occupation of Spain brought the arts and skills of the Islamic world to Europe and led to the flowering of ceramics throughout the continent. This vessel was made in Paterna, near the Christian port of Valencia. Its design and decoration, featuring a band of pseudo-Kufic (fake Arabic) letters, suggests a strong Muslim influence. The subtle blend of the Islamic and Spanish known as Hispano-Moresque.

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