Hispano-Moresque pottery as its name indicates, was made in Spain. Its origin can be traced
back to 9th century when Near Eastern potters, probably from Iraq, set up their kilns in Tunisa in order to produce lustre-painted tiles for the decoration of the prayer-niche of
the Great Mosque of Qairawan and the Fatimid palace at|
Raqqada. Later on these potters moved
to a placed called Qal'a Banu Hammad, in present day Algeria, then eventually to Moorish Spain.
By the 13th century lustre-painted pottery was produced in large numbers in Malaga. The
history of lustre-painted pottery in Spain may be divided into two major periods: the first
one before the reconquesta and the second after the reconquesta, when at the end of the 15th
century, Muslims were deported to North Africa. Nevertheless lot of Muslims became Christians
and therefore they were allowed to stay in Spain.
There is a large bowl in the Museum which belongs to the first period. It bears all the
hallmarks of Malaga and may be dated to ca. 1400 (CER0703TSR). All the other vessels in the
Museum, there are only four, belong to the second period.
The hemispherical bowl with an everted sloping rim, painted in a coppery-red lustre, showing a singing bird was most likely
the product of Manises ca. 1700 (CER0704TSR).
The products of these post-reconquesta
period are known as "Hispano-Moresque". By the 14th century besides Malaga there were several
other pottery centres, among them Murcia and Almeria.
The second bowl on the other hand, may have
already been made at Valencia or Reus about the same period (CER705TSR), while the two jars
may be attributed to Manises but to an earlier period, perhaps late 15th or early 16th century
(CER0706TSR and CER0707TSR).