The Microscopy and Macroscopy of Islamic Lustre wares

Author(s): Robert Mason

Year: 2015


Petrographic and SEM studies of the lustre-painted glazed pottery of the Islamic world between c. 700 and 1400 have defined an elite, high-technology ware made in few centres, at times only one centre for the entire Middle East; with a distribution network that spanned the Old World. Production centres such as Basra in Iraq, and al-Fustat in Egypt created some of the most advanced and influential ceramic types of the period, utilising technologies developed locally. But scientific laboratory work is almost meaningless unless it can be extended into the trench and field to fit those finds into a statistically significant understanding of how material culture can be used to understand the human behaviour of the past. This paper will focus on the wares of 8th-10th century Basra and 10th-12th century al-Fustat, and explore how attributes derived from technological developments and provenance can be used to provide an origin and a date for pottery found around the old world.

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Cite this Record

The Microscopy and Macroscopy of Islamic Lustre wares. Robert Mason. Presented at The 80th Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, San Francisco, California. 2015 ( tDAR id: 397065)



Geographic Keywords
West Asia

Spatial Coverage

min long: 25.225; min lat: 15.115 ; max long: 66.709; max lat: 45.583 ;