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Virgin and Child: C.2244-1928

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Object information

Current Location: Gallery 27 (Glaisher)


Virgin and Child


Maker: Unknown (Uncertain)


  • Bowl
  • pilgrim's souvenir bowl



Maiolica pilgrim's souvenir bowl, painted in polychrome with the Virgin holding the Christ Child in front of Santa Casa.

Pale yellowish-buff earthenware, tin-glazed overall. Painted in greyish-blue, sage-green, yellow, orange, brown, and manganese. Circular with curved sides, standing on a low footring.
Inside, the Virgin holding the Christ Child stands between sprays of foliage in front of the Santa Casa. Round the rim between greyish-blue lines there are alternating sprays of greyish-blue and yellow leaves, interrupted by the words `CON.POL.DI.S.CASA' (with dust of the Holy House) in manganese. Outside, there are two greyish-blue bands below the rim, which is yellow.


History note: Jolley's, Cambridge, from whom purchased on 11 July 1908 by Dr J.W.L. Glaisher for £1.10.0. (MS Cat. 2820). Jolley bought the bowl in the Corn Exchange, Cambridge. Glaisher could not remember its history in detail but thought Mr Jolley told him that it was owned by an architect from Bedford.

Legal notes

Dr J.W.L. Glaisher Bequest

Measurements and weight

Diameter: 10.9 cm
Height: 3.9 cm

Place(s) associated

  • Pesaro ⪼ The Marches ⪼ Italy
  • Loreto ⪼ The Marches ⪼ Italy

Acquisition and important dates

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


18th century
19th century
Circa 1700 CE - 1800 CE Circa 1800 CE - 1900 CE


Label text from the exhibition ‘Madonnas and Miracles: The Holy Home in Renaissance Italy’, on display at The Fitzwilliam Museum from 7 March until 4 June 2017: The Madonna and Child, enveloped in a tent-like dress, dominate the decoration on this little bowl. Their form reflects that of the miraculous sculpture, displayed inside the Holy House. The words ‘CON POL[VERE]. DI S. CASA’ refer to the fact that the bowl was made ‘with dust from the Holy House,’ which enhanced the devotional significance of the pilgrim souvenir.

Perhaps made in Pesaro or the Loreto area

People, subjects and objects depicted

Components of the work

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

Materials used in production


Techniques used in production

Throwing : Pale yellowish-buff earthenware, tin-glazed overall, and painted in greyish-blue, sage-green, yellow, orange, brown, and manganese.

Inscription or legends present

Inscription present: on acquisition the bowl bore a label, now missing

  • Text: old majolica made from the dust of the shrine and pilgrims feet at Loretto. Very rare.
  • Method of creation: Hand-written
  • Type: Label
  • Location: On front below figures
  • Method of creation: Painted in manganese
  • Type: Inscription

References and bibliographic entries

Related exhibitions

Identification numbers

Accession number: C.2244-1928
Primary reference Number: 79438
Old object number: 2820
Stable URI

Audit data

Created: Saturday 6 August 2011 Updated: Friday 27 November 2020 Last processed: Tuesday 22 November 2022

Associated departments & institutions

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

Citation for print

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The Fitzwilliam Museum (2022) "Virgin and Child" Web page available at: Accessed: 2022-12-08 09:57:37

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{{cite web|url= |title=Virgin and Child |author=The Fitzwilliam Museum|accessdate=2022-12-08 09:57:37|publisher=The University of Cambridge}}

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