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

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Marvered glass bowl

  • Description

    Marvering is a hot-worked glass technique in which decorative trails of molten glass are applied to a vessel by rolling it on a marver - a flat stone or iron surface. A technique developed by the Romans, Marvered glass continued to be used throughout late antiquity for various kinds of objects, from everyday vessels, to cosmetic flasks, and even weights. In the Islamic world, the production of marvered glass appears to have peaked during the 12th and 13th century in Syria and Egypt, from where most of the extant vessels seem to originate.

  • Details

    Associated place
    Africa Egypt (place of creation)
    12th - 13th century (1101 - 1300)
    Material and technique
    glass, free-blown and shaped in a mould, with marvered decoration in white
    7.5 cm (height)
    15.1 cm (diameter)
    Material index
    Technique index
    Object type index
    No. of items
    Credit line
    Purchased with the assistance of the Friends of the Ashmolean Museum, 1975.
    Accession no.
  • Further reading

    Newby, Martine S., Glass of Four Millennia, Ashmolean Handbooks (Oxford: Ashmolean Museum, 2000), no. 29 on p. 38, illus. p. 39 fig. 29

    London: Hayward Gallery, 8 April-4 July 1976, The Arts of Islam, Dalu Jones and George Michell, eds (London: Arts Council of Great Britian, 1976), no. 144 on p. 146

    Allan, James, ‘Investigations into Marvered Glass: I’, James Allan, ed., Islamic Art in the Ashmolean Museum, Part One, Oxford Studies in Islamic Arts, 10 (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1995), x.1, no. 2 on p. 25, pp.1 & 6-7, illus. p. 2 fig. 1



  • marvered

    Decorative glass created by rolling hot and malleable glass over a flat surface known as marver, to create smooth sides or to consolidate applied decoration.


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