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Ewer: C.59-1991

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Object information

Current Location: In storage


Pottery: Unidentified Orvieto pottery (Probably)




Late Medieval maiolica ewer, painted in manganese and green with leaves, Vs, oblique strokes and lines.

Pale yellowish-buff earthenware. The interior, and exterior of the foot are lead-glazed brownish-yellow; the base is unglazed, and the rest is tin-glazed off-white. Painted in manganese and copper-green.
Shape 14. Globular body on pedestal foot, with cylindrical neck flaring towards the trilobate mouth, and loop handle running down the body at the lower end.
The front is decorated with green Vs and three black-outlined leaves, each containing a smaller green leaf with a hatched centre. The handle is flanked by oblique strokes between two sets of three vertical lines. Below are two black horizontal bands; on the neck, two black bands, spaced lanceolate leaves, and a green chain between pairs of black bands; and on the handle, seven horizontal stripes in alternate colours.


History note: Signor Avvocato Marcioni or Cavaliere Capitano Lucatelli; Sotheby's, 16-17 February 1914, Catalogue of the collections of early Italian pottery formed by Signor Avvocato Marcioni and Cavaliere Capitano Lucatelli of Orvieto, part of lot 69. William Ridout; Christie's, 13 December 1938, The William Ridout collection of Italian majolica, European pottery, faience and delftware, part of lot 104 or 105; H.S. Reitlinger (d.1950); the Reitlinger Trust, Maidenhead, from which transferred in 1991.

Legal notes

H.S. Reitlinger Bequest, 1950; transferred from the Reitlinger Trust, 1991

Measurements and weight

Height: 20.7 cm

Place(s) associated

  • Orvieto ⪼ Umbria ⪼ Italy

Acquisition and important dates

Method of acquisition: Bequeathed (1991-04-29) by Reitlinger, Henry Scipio


13th Century
14th Century
Circa 1275 CE - 1375 CE


Globular ewers with tall necks and pedestal feet were made in Umbria, Lazio, and Tuscany from at least the early fourteenth century. A jug of this type is shown in a predella of the 'Marriage at Cana' from Duccio's 'Maesta', which was completed in 1311 and is now in the Museo dell'Opera del Duomo, Siena. A ewer of similar form is in the Museo dell'Opera dell'Duomo, Orvieto. Others have been found in the vault of the refectory of the Convent of San Francesco at Assisi (Umbria), the vault of the loggia of the Town Hall at Montalcino (Tuscany), and at Tuscania (Lazio).

School or Style

maiolica arcaica

People, subjects and objects depicted

Components of the work

Decoration composed of high-temperature colours ( manganese and copper-green)
Interior, Foot composed of lead-glaze
Exterior composed of tin-glaze
Body Diameter 11.1 cm
Base Diameter 9.2 cm

Materials used in production


Inscription or legends present

  • Text: '69/5' and '9'
  • Location: On base
  • Method of creation: In pencil
  • Type: Inscription

Inscription present: circular with blue border

  • Text: 'WILLIAM RIDOUT COLLECTION' printed in blue, 'O/68' inscribed in blue-black ink
  • Method of creation: Printed in blue and inscribed in blue-black ink
  • Type: Label

References and bibliographic entries

Related exhibitions

Identification numbers

Accession number: C.59-1991
Primary reference Number: 47530
Packing number: EURCER 890
Stable URI

Audit data

Created: Saturday 6 August 2011 Updated: Monday 18 December 2023 Last processed: Monday 18 December 2023

Associated departments & institutions

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

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The Fitzwilliam Museum (2024) "Ewer" Web page available at: Accessed: 2024-04-15 17:46:35

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