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Two-handled bowl: C.153-1991

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Object information

Current Location: In storage


Maker: Unidentified Orvieto pottery (Probably)




Renaissance maiolica two-handled bowl, painted in blue and yellow with a chequered medallion surrounded by concentric circles.

Earthenware, thrown with applied handles, tin-glazed creamy-white inside and outside; base partly glazed. Painted in blue and yellow.
Shape 45. Circular with curved sides and two loop handles, standing on a narrow foot.
In the middle is a chequered medallion surrounded by concentric circles: three blue, one orange, four blue, one orange and one blue. The outside of the rim is decorated with six blue inverted half-palmettes.


History note: Purportedly excavated in Orvieto. Purchased from Kerin, London, on 9 December 1933 by 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: 6.1 cm
Width: 15.9 cm

Relative size of this object

15.9 cm6.1 cm What does this represent?

Relative size of this object is displayed using code inspired by Good Form and Spectacle's work on the British Museum's Waddeson Bequest website and their dimension drawer. They chose a tennis ball to represent a universally sized object, from which you could envisage the size of an object.

Place(s) associated

  • Orvieto ⪼ Umbria ⪼ Italy

Acquisition and important dates

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


15th century
Early 16th Century
Circa 1450 CE - 1510 CE


During the second half of the 15th century simply decorated two-handled bowls were made in immense quantities in central Italy, judging by the numbers extant. They are usually decorated in two or three colours with a central medallion containing a stylized plant motif, grid or spots, surrounded by concentric circles, and may have horizontal bands or fan-like palmettes or half-palmettes on the exterior. Large quantities of them have been recovered from butti (rubbish pits) in Orvieto. A bowl with analogous decoration was found at a kiln site adjacent to the Pozzo della Cava in via della Cava, Orvieto.

School or Style


Components of the work

Decoration composed of high-temperature colours ( blue and yellow)
Rim Diameter 11.2 cm

Materials used in production


Techniques used in production

Tin-glazing : Earthenware, tin-glazed creamy-white inside and outside; base partly glazed. Painted in blue and yellow.

Inscription or legends present

Inscription present: circular with serrated edge

  • Text: 377/L
  • Method of creation: Inscribed in pencil
  • Type: Label

References and bibliographic entries

Related exhibitions

Identification numbers

Accession number: C.153-1991
Primary reference Number: 72175
Packing number: EURCER 436
Stable URI

Audit data

Created: Saturday 6 August 2011 Updated: Tuesday 9 February 2021 Last processed: Sunday 21 March 2021

Associated departments & institutions

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

Citation for print

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The Fitzwilliam Museum (2023) "Two-handled bowl" Web page available at: Accessed: 2023-05-30 13:48:07

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