Art/ Collection/ Art Object

Bowl with Figural Imagery

Object Name:
second half 14th century
Attributed to Iran
Brass; hammered and turned, engraved, and inlaid with gold, silver, and black compound
H. 4 1/4 in. (10.8 cm)
Diam. 7 1/4 in. (18.4 cm)
Credit Line:
Rogers Fund, 1941
Accession Number:
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 455
This hammered and turned brass bowl holds six circular medallions depicting figural scenes inlaid in gold, silver, and a black compound. In between each of these medallions is a section of a continuous inscription in muhaqqaq and kufic scripts that includes good wishes to the owner and declarations of the glory of God. Engraved fish and waterfowl on the interior suggest that the bowl may once have been used to hold water.
Inscription: Arabic, in Naskhi script; translation: "Glory to our Lord, the mighty Sultan, ruler of the necks of the peoples, Sultan of Sultans, of the Arabs and the Persians, the learned";
another inscription in Kufic characters across uprights of main inscription; the first word seems to be to the owner so probably the others are good wishes, but I cannot at present decipher them. (HMcA 1943) Inscription scratched on bottom and two pointed medallions with letters. Undeciphered. Probably refer to former owners.

Translation by Yassir al-Tabba (1978):
"Glory to our lord, the great sultan, the possessor of the necks of the nations, the sultan, of the sultans of the Arabs and the Persians, the wise". Over it an illegible Kufic inscription.

Arabic inscription in thulth script on the body:

العز لمولانا / السلطان الاعظم/ مالک رقاب الامم/ السلطان/ سلاطین العرب/ و العجم العالم/

Above it are a few unreadable words in kufic script.
On the base in nasta’liq script:
پنجاه بیست پنج ده نار پنجنار/8
[ Karekin Beshir, until 1941; sold to MMA]
Palm Beach, FL. The Society of the Four Arts. "Loan to the Society of the Four Arts, Palm Beach, Fl," February 2, 1962–February 27, 1962, no catalogue.

Related Objects


Artist: Date: ca. 1180–1210
Accession Number: 44.15
Date: ca. 1180–1210 Medium: Brass; raised, repoussé, inlaid with silver and a black compound Accession: 44.15 On view in:Gallery 453

Incense Burner of Amir Saif al-Dunya wa’l-Din ibn Muhammad al-Mawardi

Artist: Ja`far ibn Muhammad ibn `Ali Date: dated A.H. 577/ A.D. 1181–82 Medium: Bronze; cast, engraved, chased, pierced Accession: 51.56 On view in:Gallery 453

Basin with Figural Imagery

Artist: Date: early 14th century
Accession Number: 91.1.521
Date: early 14th century Medium: Brass; raised, engraved, inlaid with silver and gold Accession: 91.1.521 On view in:Gallery 455

Astrolabe of ‘Umar ibn Yusuf ibn ‘Umar ibn ‘Ali ibn Rasul al-Muzaffari

Artist: ‘Umar ibn Yusuf ibn ‘Umar ibn ‘Ali ibn Rasul al-Muzaffari Date: dated A.H. 690/ A.D. 1291 Medium: Brass; cast and hammered, pierced, chased, inlaid with silver Accession: 91.1.535a–h On view in:Gallery 454

Mortar and pestle made for Abu Bakr 'Ali Malikzad al-Tabrizi

Artist: Date: late 12th–early 13th century
Accession Number: 91.1.527a, b
Date: late 12th–early 13th century Medium: Brass; cast, chased, engraved, and inlaid with silver and black compound Accession: 91.1.527a, b On view in:Gallery 453