With its exquisite palette and elegant scrolling vine design, this tile, one of three corner tiles, once formed part of a sumptuous architectural installation. Inscribed with verses of the Qur'an, the tiles presumably decorated a religious structure, such as a mosque or tomb complex. The inscription that runs along the top of one of these tiles would have continued in the form of a frieze—as can be seen in the series of related tiles on display in the nearby wall case.
Inscription: In Arabic, in naskh script, on upper narrow band: Qur'an, chapter 55 verses 65-70
In Arabic, in thuluth script, in upper register: Qur'an, chapter 62 verses 9-10
In Arabic, in naskh script, on lower narrow band: Qur'an, chapter 34 verse 19
(M. Keene, 1973)
H. O. Havemeyer Collection, New York (by 1930–40; gifted to MMA)
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Ceramic Art of the Near East," 1931, no. 78.
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Calligraphy West of China," March 15, 1972–May 7, 1972, no catalogue.
New York. Hagop Kevorkian Fund Special Exhibitions Gallery. "Persian Tiles," May 4, 1993–January 2, 1994, no. 21c.
Wallis, Henry. "The Thirteenth Century Lustred Wall-Tiles." In The Godman Collection. Persian Ceramic Art belonging to Mr. F. Ducane Godman, F.R.S; with Examples from other Collections. London, 1894. ill. pl. XIII.
Dimand, Maurice S. "The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, May 12 to June 28, 1931." In Loan Exhibition of Ceramic Art of the Near East. New York, 1931. no. 78, p. 19, no ill.
Dimand, Maurice S. "A Gift of Islamic Pottery." Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin vol. 36, no. 3 (1941). pp. 70-73, ill. fig. 2 (b/w).
Carboni, Stefano, and Tomoko Masuya. Persian Tiles. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1993. no. 21c, p. 26, ill. (b/w).