Ceramic Vessel in the Shape of a Mosque Lamp

Object Name: Mosque lamp

Date: 1525–40

Geography: Made in Turkey, Iznik

Medium: Stonepaste; painted in blue under transparent glaze

Dimensions: H. 6 11/16 in. (17 cm)
Max. diam. 5 13/16 in. (14.8 cm)

Classification: Ceramics

Credit Line: Harris Brisbane Dick Fund, 1959

Accession Number: 59.69.3


With its delicate spiraling stem design, this small vessel belongs to a group of ceramics formerly referred to as "Golden Horn" wares. Current scholarship, however, prefers the term tughrakes-, or "tughra‑illuminator" style for such decoration, comparing its design to the fine swirling vines adorning tughra calligraphies. During this period, pottery shapes often imitated metalwork forms. This piece, however, emulates glass mosque lamps, which often displayed Arabic inscriptions.