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A Brief Biography Of Abu Zayd

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Chapter Summary

Abu Zayd Kashani is the most famous potter of medieval Iran: he worked in the two most expensive overglaze techniques, enamel and luster, and he left behind the greatest number of signed works. The work by Abu Zayd, newly brought to light and acquired by the David Collection in Copenhagen, is a medium-sized bowl with straight, flaring sides joined to a high foot ring at a sharp angle. Abu Zayd also collaborated on the larger molded revetments and niches used to cover cenotaphs and walls, as indicated by his signatures in the major shrines in Iran. Abu Zayd?s lengthy signatures tell us more precisely about his many skills in making these tiles and vessels. In most cases, however, Abu Zayd transcribed verses by other poets. Scholars of Persian literature have identified some one hundred verses by a dozen poets on Kashan wares made at the turn of the thirteenth century.

Keywords: Abu Zayd Kashani; enamel; luster; medieval Iran; molded revetments; niches; Persian literature; tiles; vessels

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