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Pilgrim bottle: Gl.C.28-1928

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Object information

Current Location: Gallery 27 (Glaisher)


Production: Unidentified Lower Arno area pottery
Production: Unidentified Pontorme pottery (Possibly)
Production: Unidentified Pisan pottery (Possibly)




Pale red earthenware, partly decorated with red slip marbled with cream, and lead-glazed; the lower part and the underside of the foot are unglazed. The flask stands on a circular foot which rises into a cylindrical stem, above which it bulges out and then contracts into a tall slender, sloping neck with a projecting roll top . On both sides of the bulbous part there are two loops for carrying cords or straps, each moulded with a lion's mask.


History note: Excavated in London. Purchased about 1894 from Fenton of Oxford Street, London, by Dr J.W.L. Glaisher, FRS, Trinity College, Cambridge

Legal notes

Dr J.W.L. Glaisher Bequest

Measurements and weight

Height: 23.3 cm
Width: 12.3 cm

Place(s) associated

  • Pontorme ⪼ Tuscany ⪼ Italy
  • Pisa ⪼ Tuscany ⪼ Italy

Acquisition and important dates

Method of acquisition: Bequeathed (1928-12-07) by Glaisher, J. W. L., Dr


17th Century
Circa 1600 CE - 1680 CE


Flasks of this form were intended to be carried on a cord or strap passed through the handles on the sides. Many examples have been found in England, and in the late nineteenth century when this one was bought by Dr J.W.L. Glaisher, they were believed to be English. Excavated fragments of slipware indicate that they were made in the Lower Arno area of Tuscany which was convenient for export to northern Europe from Pisa. See Thornton and Wilson, 2009, and Wilson, 2017, for a discussion of evidence for attribution possibly to Pontorme, were comparable slipware fragments have been found, or other places in the area, such as Montelupo, Empoli or Pisa.

Components of the work

Decoration composed of slip ( red and cream)
Exterior composed of lead-glaze
Foot Diameter 8.8 cm

Materials used in production

pale red Earthenware

References and bibliographic entries

Identification numbers

Accession number: Gl.C.28-1928
Primary reference Number: 77046
Glaisher MS Catalogue: 811
Stable URI

Audit data

Created: Saturday 6 August 2011 Updated: Tuesday 9 January 2024 Last processed: Tuesday 13 February 2024

Associated departments & institutions

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

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The Fitzwilliam Museum (2024) "Pilgrim bottle" Web page available at: Accessed: 2024-07-25 17:12:16

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{{cite web|url= |title=Pilgrim bottle |author=The Fitzwilliam Museum|accessdate=2024-07-25 17:12:16|publisher=The University of Cambridge}}

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