Italian maiolica Castel Durante waisted albarello, mid 16th century, swelling out to sloping shoulder and everted rim, painted in underglaze cobalt blue with yellow, green, orange, brown and black detail, the decoration in three horizontal zones separated by orange-striped yellow bands, the top and bottom with floral garlands, beribboned garlands similarly enclosing a portrait of a bearded man wearing a turban, reserved against a cobalt ground with scrolling foliage, trofei of musical instruments and a label inscribed ‘Iro de lalandal’ (possibly referring to Alhandali, colocynth lozenges), ;
Height: 6 1/16 in. (15.5cm.)
. Albarelli, the form and word both Islamic in origin, were widely used as pharmaceutical jars in Italy and Spain. Such ornamental motifs as seen here are associated with Castel Durante, from where albarelli were commissioned for use in pharmacies throughout 16th century Italy. A similar example was bought by Fortnum and lent to the Ashmolean in 1887.