Ewer with Arabic Proverb, "Devotion Fortifies Action"

On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 453

Slip-painting, the technique employed to decorate this ewer, was developed in Khurasan and Central Asia in the 10th century. It consists of diluting the pigment of the desired color in a slip (liquid clay), and of painting designs with the mixture: the adherence of the slip-painted designs to the surface of the vessel makes for a neat design, that does not run under the glaze. In this case, fine incisions of the black slip give definition to the design.
The black slip-painting outlines a continuous motif of palmettes connected by a band with loops and an inscription in Kufic script. The text, typical of slip-painted vessels of this type, is an Arabic proverb and reads "devotion fortifies action".

Ewer with Arabic Proverb, "Devotion Fortifies Action", Earthenware; white slip with black slip decoration under transparent glaze

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