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Large Jar with Scratched Decoration

GLS 610 | probably Syria | 8th–9th century AD

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Artwork Details

Title: Large Jar with Scratched Decoration

Date: 8th–9th century AD

Location: probably Syria

Materials: bubbly mid-blue glass, tooled and with scratched decoration; the glass is considerably inflated and therefore light for its size

Dimensions: 23.5 x 12.5cm

Accession Number: GLS 610

Other Notes:

The large jar has rounded stepped shoulders and sides that taper inwards gently to the base, which has been deeply pushed in and bears a pontil mark. The thick collar-rim has been folded out.
The scratched decoration, which was executed with a rotating tool, is of successive horizontal bands, all on hatched grounds of oblique strokes and all, with the exception of the central band, running from top left to bottom right. The topmost band is of sharply pointed triangles. Below that is a chain band of oval links with trefoils at their joints and stylized foliate filling motifs in reserve. The central decoration is a broad band of vertical panels, perhaps pseudo-epigraphic, each panel being divided into two by crimped lines, the left-hand section with oblique hatching from top right to bottom left. Below this is a band of palmettes between narrow chain bands with a single lobe above and below at their joints.
The decoration is characteristic of the group, although the execution of the motifs is somewhat simplified.


S.M. Goldstein et al, Glass. From Sasanian Antecedents to European Imitations, The Nasser D Khalili Collection of Islamic Art, volume XV, London 2005, cat.173, pp.154–5.

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