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Two-handled cup: C.96-1927

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Object information

Current Location: In storage


Pottery: Unidentified Orvieto pottery




Medieval, maiolica two-handled cup painted in green and brown with, on the inside, a long-tailed bird.

Pale buff earthenware, the exterior covered with yellowish-brown lead-glaze which appears opaque; interior tin-glazed ivory. Painted in copper-green and manganese-brown.
Shape 21. Shallow bowl with carinated sides, standing on a narrow, solid foot; two small loop handles, each made from a roll of clay.
Inside, within two concentric manganese circles, a long-tailed bird struts to the right, holding in its beak a cross-hatched, trefoil-shaped leaf on a stalk. Above, there is a similarly shaped leaf on a coiling stem, and, on the ground between the bird's feet, a serrated, trowel-shaped leaf. Outside, there is a green horizontal band.


History note: Unknown before F. Leverton Harris

Legal notes

F. Leverton Harris Bequest, 1926.

Measurements and weight

Height: 4.5 cm
Width: 15.8 cm

Place(s) associated

  • Orvieto ⪼ Umbria ⪼ Italy

Acquisition and important dates

Method of acquisition: Bequeathed (1927) by Harris, F. Leverton, The Right Hon.


13th Century
14th Century
Circa 1250 CE - 1350 CE


Birds of several types appear on carinated cups from Oriveto and on other cup and bowl shapes. Examples closely resembling this one are in the Museum für Kunst und Gewerbe, Hamburg, and the Museo Internazionale delle Ceramiche, Faenza. An example with a different kind of bird is in the Bargello, Florence, and another was formerly in the Imbert Collection. Cups of this type have also been found further south in Lazio, for example at Tuscani.

School or Style

maiolica arcaica

People, subjects and objects depicted

Components of the work

Decoration composed of high-temperature colours ( manganese-brown and copper-green)
Exterior composed of lead-glaze
Interior composed of tin-glaze

Materials used in production


Inscription or legends present

  • Text: 179
  • Location: On the outside
  • Method of creation: In black

References and bibliographic entries

Related exhibitions

Identification numbers

Accession number: C.96-1927
Primary reference Number: 47322
Stable URI

Audit data

Created: Saturday 6 August 2011 Updated: Tuesday 25 February 2020 Last processed: Friday 8 December 2023

Associated departments & institutions

Owner or interested party: The Fitzwilliam Museum
Associated department: Applied Arts

Citation for print

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The Fitzwilliam Museum (2024) "Two-handled cup" Web page available at: Accessed: 2024-06-17 05:15:44

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{{cite web|url= |title=Two-handled cup |author=The Fitzwilliam Museum|accessdate=2024-06-17 05:15:44|publisher=The University of Cambridge}}

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