Ottoman, circa 1500 CE
Materials and technique
Fritware, polychrome underglaze painted
15.5 x 75 cm
The growth of the ceramic industry in Iznik played a significant role in the codification of a distinctly Ottoman court aesthetic and ceramic technique. Small square tiles produced in Iznik were transported to Istanbul to decorate numerous palaces and mosques in brilliant colours of blue, white, turquoise, green, and an astounding relief red. This frieze, formed from three separate tiles, might once have decorated part of a mosque. Its inscription, written in Arabic in a graceful naskh script, comes from the twelfth chapter of the Qur’an, and reads: “Allah is the best guardian and He is the most merciful of the merciful.”
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