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The Temptation: C.217-1991

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Object information

Current Location: In storage


The Temptation


Maker: Unknown (Probably)
Woodcutter: Salomon, Bernard (After)




Renaissance maiolica shallow bowl, painted in polychrome with The Temptation.

Shallow bowl. Earthenware, tin-glazed overall; the reverse pale beige. Painted in blue, green, yellow, orange, brown, manganese-purple, and black.
Circular with a scalloped rim of twenty-two arcs, shallow curved sides moulded with petals, and convex centre; the foot is missing.
The Temptation. Adam sits on a bank on the left, extending his right hand to take the apple offered to him by Eve, who stands on the right. The Tree of Knowledge entwined by the Serpent is behind them. In the landscape background there is a stag on the left and a lion on the right. The rim is yellow. On the back, `Adam/et Eva' with a large loopy squiggle below is inscribed inside the footring in manganese-purple.


History note: 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

Diameter: 34.5 cm
Height: 5.1 cm

Place(s) associated

  • Urbino ⪼ The Marches ⪼ Italy

Acquisition and important dates

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


16th Century, Late
Circa 1560 CE - 1590 CE


'The design was based on Bernard Salomon's fourth woodcut in Damiano Maraffi's 'Figure del Vecchio Testamento, con versi toscani', Lyon (Jean de Tournes), 1554 (fig. 46). The camel has been omitted and the rest of the background is different.

School or Style


People, subjects and objects depicted

Components of the work

Decoration composed of high-temperature colours ( blue, green, yellow, orange, brown, manganese-purple, and black)

Materials used in production


Techniques used in production

Moulding : Earthenware, tin-glazed overall; the reverse pale beige. Painted in blue, green, yellow, orange, brown, manganese-purple, and black.

Inscription or legends present

Inscription present: oval with gold border

  • Text: 35
  • Location: Inside footring
  • Method of creation: Inscribed in pencil
  • Type: Label

Inscription present: Adam/et Eva following by a loopy squiggle

  • Text: Adam/et Eva
  • Location: Inside the footring
  • Method of creation: Painted in manganese-purple
  • Type: Inscription

References and bibliographic entries

Identification numbers

Accession number: C.217-1991
Primary reference Number: 73173
Packing number: EURCER 324
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

Citation for print

This record can be cited in the Harvard Bibliographic style using the text below:

The Fitzwilliam Museum (2024) "The Temptation" Web page available at: Accessed: 2024-02-25 06:14:06

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{{cite web|url= |title=The Temptation |author=The Fitzwilliam Museum|accessdate=2024-02-25 06:14:06|publisher=The University of Cambridge}}

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