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Mihrab Tile

Object Name:
Tile with niche design
Date:
dated A.H. 722/ A.D. 1322–23
Geography:
Iran
Culture:
Islamic
Medium:
Stonepaste; modeled, painted under transparent glaze
Dimensions:
H. 27 3/8 in. (69.5 cm) W. 26 in. (66 cm) Wt. 74 lbs. (33.6 kg)
Classification:
Ceramics-Tiles
Credit Line:
Gift of William Mandel, 1983
Accession Number:
1983.345
  • Description

    This tile once formed part of a mihrab, or niche, facing Mecca, toward which prayer is directed in mosques. The inscription at its top includes a Qur'anic reference to the mihrab’s function, and provides the date of the tile’s manufacture in the fourteenth century. This surrounds the modeled vine and tendril motif executed with touches of black and turquoise. We must imagine that the interior walls of the building containing this mihrab were once covered in similar tiles, as was common during the Ilkhanid period in Iran.

  • Signatures, Inscriptions, and Markings

    Inscription: Inscription in Arabic in ornamental naskhi script:
    بسم الله الرحمن الرحیم
    أقم الصلوة طرفي النهار وزلفا من اللیل إن الحسنات یذهبن السیئات ذلك ذکری للذاکر ]ین[
    لسنة 7٢٢
    In the name of God, the Merciful, the Compassionate.
    And perform the prayer at the two ends of the day and nigh of the night;
    Surely the good deeds will drive away evil deeds.
    That is a remembrance unto the mindful (Qur’an 11:114)
    A.H. 722 /A.D. 1322–33

  • Provenance

    William Mandel, New York (by 1967–83)

  • See also
    What
    Where
    When
    In the Museum
    Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History
    MetPublications
453211

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