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Dish

  • Place of origin:

    Venice (made)

  • Date:

    1500 - 1550 (made)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    mould-blown, enamelled and gilt

  • Museum number:

    5490-1859

  • Gallery location:

    Medieval & Renaissance, Room 63, The Edwin and Susan Davies Gallery, case 9

Venetian enamelled and gilt glass was a luxury product exported all over Italy and beyond. The glassmakers of Venice had an excellent and wide spread reputation for high-quality colourless glass and fine workmanship in gilding and enamelling.

Account books and inventories of the time sometimes mention small numbers of 'worked' or 'gilded' glass and often this is stated to have come from Venice or Murano, the Venetian island on which the glass industry was concentrated. The value of such items was often many times as great as that of ordinary glasses and bottles which were used in much greater quantities.

Sometimes dishes, goblet and jugs were decorated with the coats of arms of a particular family. Such objects were specially ordered from Venice and were used for display or occasional practical use at the table during special banquets.
Large dishes like this were used for serving food or possibly as a basin to accompany a ewer, used for hand-washing at the table.

Physical description

Mould-blown, clear colourless glass, enamelled and gilt in the centre with a coat of arms.

Place of Origin

Venice (made)

Date

1500 - 1550 (made)

Materials and Techniques

mould-blown, enamelled and gilt

Dimensions

Height: 5.8 cm, Diameter: 36.5 cm greatest width, Weight: 1.56 kg

Object history note

The arms are probably those of the Gallerani family of Siena.

Historical context note

Venetian enamelled and gilt glass was a luxury product exported all over Italy and beyond. The glassmakers of Venice had an excellent and wide spread reputation for high-quality colourless glass and fine workmanship in gilding and enamelling.
Account books and inventories of the time sometimes mention small numbers of 'worked' or 'gilded' glass and often this is stated to have come from Venice or Murano, the Venetian island on which the glass industry was concentrated. The value of such items was often many times as great as that of ordinary glasses and bottles which were used in much greater quantities.
Sometimes dishes, goblet and jugs were decorated with the coats of arms of a particular family. Such objects were specially ordered from Venice and were used for display or occasional practical use at the table during special banquets.
Large dishes like this were used for serving food or possibly as a basin to accompany a ewer, used for hand-washing at the table.

Descriptive line

Dish, enamelled glass, Italy (Venice), 1500-1550

Labels and date

This piece is painted with the coat of arms of the Gallerani family of Siena. []

Materials

Glass

Techniques

Enamelling

Categories

Glass; Eating

Collection

Ceramics Collection

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