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Iznik Tile with Vase of Flowers

Iznik Tile with Vase of Flowers

Iznik Tile with Vase of Flowers


Ottoman Turkey, First half of the 17th century
Earthenware with underglaze decoration
24.5cm high, 25cm wide
Stock no.: A3562

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Iznik Tile with Vase of Flowers

 

This fritware tile features a vase of flowers holding a spray of seven carnations and two tulips in cobalt blue and turquoise, on a ground of white slip. Cypress trees frame the tile, and small prunus blossoms fill the empty spaces around the bouquet. 
Tiles of this design were used throughout the Ottoman world. Usually installed on the lower half of a wall, they appeared in the New Mosque (Yeni Cami), Istanbul, completed in 1663. Following a 1666-1668 refurbishment programme, the result of the 1574 Topkapı fire, tiles of this pattern were installed in several courtyards of the palace.1 These tiles were also exported to Egypt, where the Blue Mosque (Aqsunqur) in Cairo was redecorated under Ottoman rule in 1652-64.2
Tiles from this group can be seen in the Benaki Museum, Athens (accession nos 20283-20288, 20890) and the British Museum, London (accession no. OA+.10771.1-4).

1 Carswell, John, Moraitou, Mina, and Gibson, Melanie. Iznik Ceramics at the Benaki Museum. Athens: Benaki Museum, 2023. P. 215.
2 Carswell, John. Iznik Pottery. London: British Museum Press, 1998. Pp. 106-7. 

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