Marble Jar of Zayn al-Din Yahya Al-Ustadar

On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 454

Large marble jars were used to store drinking water, either for use in a private residence or, as is probably the case with this example, a public building. The inscription on this jar indicates that it was an endowment by the amir Zain al‑Din Yahya al‑Ustadar, who served as majordomo during the reign of Sultan Jaqmaq (r. 1438–53) and subsequent rulers. The jar was perhaps intended for use at the mosque that he commissioned in 1444, which still stands in Cairo.

Marble Jar of Zayn al-Din Yahya Al-Ustadar, Marble; carved

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