Iranian or Iraqi, 9th c.
Glass, free-blown(?) and relief-cut; h. 53/8 in. (13.6 cm), diam. at lip 5 5/8 in. (14.2 cm)
In many respects the glass produced by medieval Muslim craftsmen has never been surpassed. These artists continued pre-Islamic glass traditions as well as developing totally new departures for the medium. One such new technique was used to produce this beaker, whose ornament was created by cutting away the entire outer surface except for the design, which is then in relief. The technique and the design (palmettes, half-palmettes, and floral motifs on two scrolls between two horizontal ridges) bear a close resemblance to early Islamic carved rock crystal. In size, preservation, and fineness, this piece has few parallels in Islamic relief-cut glass. Purchase, Rogers Fund and Jack A. Josephson, Dr. and Mrs. Lewis Balamuth, Mr and Mrs. Alvin W. Pearson Gifts, 1974, 1974.45
Tuesday, October 23, 2018
From The Metropolitan Museum of Art Guide, 1983 page 313.