Beginning 16th century
cm 20 x 14.7
In the Renaissance the majolica of Faenza, and in general the Italian one, definitively left the gothic and Moorish decorative motifs to give prominence to the human figure. The so-called majolica “love vessels” were decorated with beautiful, idealized ladies, portrayed following the wish of their sweethearts to celebrate their marriage. The jug is an emblem of this production, it is decorated with a young woman profile, she is wearing a typical headdress of the epoch, a gown with a large neckline and ribbons. The background is blue with the inscription “MARIA B” on a scroll, the letter B means Beautiful. Besides feminine portraits, and more rarely male ones, majolica love vessels were decorated with a rich repertoire of love symbols such as the heart suffering or firing for love, the shaking hands meaning loyalty and the pregnant rabbit which means fecundity.
Castelli d’Abruzzo, Pompei workshop
Half 16th century
cm 28.5 x 22.5 x 17.5
The elegant jug represents an excellent exemplar of pharmacy vessel produced around the middle of the 16th century in the little ceramic centre of Castelli d’Abruzzo. The work is part of the well-known apothecary set of “Orsini-Colonna”. This production is made up of 240 exemplars, probably belonging to different pharmacy sets, which share a high qualitative standard, typical of the production of the prestigious Pompei workshop in Castelli. The jug is decorated with two young well-groomed women painted in profile, over a scroll with the name of the medicament in block letters “SYO.DE.EVPATORIO” (syrup). The original spout is modeled in the shape of a dragon head, with a scaled neck: it is a peculiar feature of this pharmaceutical set.
Third quarter 16th century
cm 21.5 x 22.5