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Five Tiles from an Inscriptional Frieze

Object Name:
Tile from a frieze
Date:
early 14th century
Geography:
Iran, Kashan
Culture:
Islamic
Medium:
Stonepaste; inglaze painted in blue and turquoise, luster-painted on opaque white glaze, modeled
Dimensions:
H. 7 9/16 in. (21.7 cm) W. 15 5/8 in. (39.7 cm) D. 1 1/16 in. (2.7 cm)
Classification:
Ceramics-Tiles
Credit Line:
Gift of Mrs. Frederick F. Thompson, 1915
Accession Number:
15.76.4
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 455
Once part of a calligraphic frieze within a tomb or religious structure, this tile holds three lines of religious text. Executed in thuluth script, the raised writing of the central band is part of a Qur’anic verse from Sura 2 (The Cow). The calligraphic inscriptions painted in luster above and below are from other sections of the Qur’an, although most of the luster on the lower register has worn off. Perhaps set at eye level above a dado of geometric tiles, the full group once formed a continuous band of text. A total of twenty tiles from this frieze are known to exist, including eight in the Museum’s collection.
Inscription: Probably from Sura 2 (see curatorial file)
Mrs. Frederick F. Thompson, New York (until 1915; gifted to MMA)
Schimmel, Annemarie. "Islamic Calligraphy." Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin vol. (Summer 1992). p. 29, ill. fig. 35 (color).

Carboni, Stefano, and Tomoko Masuya. Persian Tiles. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1993. no. 21f, p. 26, ill. (b/w).



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