Narrow-neck jug with single handle and molded decorative register at shoulderArtist(s)IranianArtist NationalityIranianObject Creation Date10th century - 12th centuryMedium & Supportmolded terracottaDimensions
7 5/8 in. x 6 in. x 6 in. ( 19.37 cm x 15.24 cm x 15.24 cm )Credit LineMuseum PurchaseLabel copy
The inscription on this unglazed jug is written in a rather simple Kufic script, quite likely by an unlettered craftsman who did not adequately plan for the entire two lines of poetry quoted here. Interestingly, both this and the animal-headed ewer on view in this same case have the same poetic inscription:
"Do you not see that poverty wishes for wealth and that wealth is to be protected against poverty?"
The poem, generally attributed to Imam ‘Ali, the first leader of Shi‘ism, is actually recorded in later compendia of Arabic poetry, including al-‘Iqd al-Farid. Its use on an object from a non-Arab-speaking environment attests to the symbolic value of writing and to the great cache of Arabic poetry.
Yasser Tabbaa, Guest Curator, ‘Art of the Written Word,” 1/15–6/5/2005Primary Object Classification Ceramic Primary Object TypepitcherCollection AreaWesternRights
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Islamic (culture or style)
ceramics (object genre)