Art/ Collection/ Collection/ Art Object

Ewer with Birds and Animals

Object Name:
10th century
probably Iran; Iran, Nishapur
Glass, colorless; blown, folded foot, applied handle, cut
H. 5 3/4 in. (14.5 cm), max. diam. 4 in. (10.2 cm), Diam. (at rim) 3 5/8 in. (9.1 cm) Diam. (belly) 4 in. (10.2 cm) Diam. (base) 2 15/16 in. (7.5 cm)
Credit Line:
Rogers Fund, 1939
Accession Number:
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 453
This ewer decorated with quadrupeds and birds in roundels, probably made in Nishapur, is one of the best examples of glass vessels with wheel-cut designs. The two roundels on either side of the handle show long-tailed birds, and the third bears a crouching lion. While this was the only glass vessel found at Nishapur with a pattern of roundels around its body, the decoration type is known from other examples of Sasanian and Islamic metalwork, textiles, ceramics, and glass. Broken when excavated, it has been reassembled from approximately twenty pieces and its surface retains slight traces of iridescence.
1938, excavated at Tepe Madrasa in Nishapur, Iran by the Metropolitan Museum of Art's expedition; 1939, acquired by the Museum in the division of finds

"The Museum's Excavations at Nishapur." Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin vol. 37, no. 4 (1942). p. 111, ill. fig. 35 (b/w).

McAllister, Hannah, Maurice S. Dimand, Charles K. Wilkinson, and Walter Hauser. "Excavations of the Iranian Expedition in the Kanat Teppeh, Nishapur." Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin, old series, vol. 37 (1942). pp. 106, 111, ill. fig. 35 (b/w).

Kröger, Jens. Nishapur Glass of the Early Islamic Period. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1995. no. 228, pp. 174-5, ill. (b/w).

Carboni, Stefano, David Whitehouse, Robert H. Brill, and William Gudenrath. Glass of the Sultans. New Haven: Yale University Press, 2001. no. 97, pp. 192-93, ill. p. 192 (color).

Ekhtiar, Maryam, Sheila R. Canby, Navina Haidar, and Priscilla P. Soucek, ed. Masterpieces from the Department of Islamic Art in The Metropolitan Museum of Art. 1st ed. ed. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 2011. no. 82, p. 126, ill. p. 126 (color).

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