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Eastern Art Online, Yousef Jameel Centre for Islamic and Asian Art

Ashmolean − Eastern Art Online, Yousef Jameel Centre for Islamic and Asian Art

Islamic Ceramics

A select catalogue of the Ashmolean's collection of ceramics from the Islamic world from the 9th to 18th century, by James Allen (published Oxford, 1991).

Islamic ceramics, by James W. Allan
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Glossary

Alkaline glaze: a glaze fluxed with alkali e.g. soda or potash.

Earthenware: a ceramic body made from clay maturing at c. 850-1200 C.

Flux: a substance which determines melting and fusion point of a glaze e.g. lead oxide.

Frit: a pulverised, insoluble glass formed by the fusion (or fritting) of the various materials being used.

Glaze: vitreous (glassy) coating applied to the surface of a pot to make it impermeable or for decorative effect.

Kufic: geometric form of Arabic script.

Lead glaze: a glaze fluxed with lead oxide.

Lustre: a metallic sheen on the surface of a glaze used for its decorative effect (see no. 3 [EA1956.66].

Maiolica: tin-glazed earthenware in the tradition of the Italian Renaissance.

Minai ware: pottery decorated in overglaze colours (see nos. 13-14 [EAX.3102 & EA1956.36]).

Porcelain: a ceramic body made of felspathic clay maturing at c. 1350-1400 C.

Sgraffito ware: ceramics decorated with incised designs under the glaze (see no. 5 [EA1978.1759]).

Slip: a semi-fluid coloured clay used either for coating a pot or decorating it before glazing.

Stone-paste: an artificial ceramic body made, according to the medieval Persian potter Abu'l-Qasim Kashani, from ten parts of ground quartz, one part of ground glass (alkaline) frit and one part of fine white clay. The stone-paste body of sixteenth century Iznik pottery also contained lead-rich frit.

Stoneware: a ceramic body made from clay, harder and heavier that earthenware, maturing at c. 1200-1300 C.

Tin glaze: a glaze (lead- or alkaline-fluxed) opacified with tin oxide.

Notice

Object information may not accurately reflect the actual contents of the original publication, since our online objects contain current information held in our collections database. Click on 'buy this publication' to purchase printed versions of our online publications, where available, or contact the Jameel Study Centre to arrange access to books on our collections that are now out of print.

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