Art/ Collection/ Art Object

Architectural Tile with Partial Inscription

Object Name:
second half 14th century
Attributed to present-day Uzbekistan
Stonepaste; carved and glazed
14 3/16 x 11 x 2 15/16 in. (36 x 28 x 7.5 cm)
Credit Line:
Purchase, Friends of Islamic Art Gifts and Elaine Rosenberg Gift, 2006
Accession Number:
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 455
This tile, created in a single piece, once formed part of a larger decorative scheme on the façade of a building. The fragmentary calligraphic inscription along the bottom half was hand-carved, and the tile created in a slightly irregular shape to fit - puzzlelike - with the other tiles that once surrounded it. The slightly curving top suggests that it may have formed part of an arch-shaped decoration over a window or iwan.
Inscription: [al-mulk] li-llah al-mu [lk li'-llah]

Translated from Kufic: [Sovereignty] is for God. Sovereignty is [for God.]
Private Collection, England(until 2005; sold to Ray); [ Simon Ray, London, 2005–6; sold to MMA]
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