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made at Urbino, Italy

Postcard of Dish.
© National Museums Scotland


This maiolica dish was made at Urbino in Italy between around 1520 and 1530. It was painted by Nicola (di Gabriele Sbraghe) da Urbino. The plate is one of five surviving pieces in the Museum from a single service. There are six other known pieces.

The dish is decorated in polychrome with the arms of the Calini family of Brescia surrounded by a depiction of 'Neptune transforming Cygnus into a swan' from Ovid's Metamorphoses. As he was dying, Neptune turned his son Cygnus into a swan. Ten years later, Neptune avenged his death by persuading Apollo to guide the arrow of the warrior Paris, shooting Achilles dead.

Nicola di Gabriele Sbraghe worked in Urbino most of his life and died there in 1537 or 1538. He was responsible for a number of works dating from just before 1520 to the later 1530s.

Record details

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Online ID: 000-190-004-682-C
Image Rights Holder: National Museums Scotland
Project: 0098: National Museums Scotland
Project description | View all records in project
Ref: National Museums Scotland  A.1897.327 B
Date: 1520 - 1530
Between around 1520 and 1530
Material: Earthenware
Dimensions: 38 mm H x 270 mm D
Subject: Ceramics : earthenware : Italy : Urbino
Who: Calini Family (Arms depicted)
Charles Kirkpatrick Sharpe Collection (Previous owner)
Cygnus (Depicted)
Lady Jane Dundas Collection (Previous owner)
Misses Forbes Collection (Previous owner)
Neptune (Depicted)
Nicola di Gabriele Sbraghe, Urbino (Delineator)
Where: Italy, Urbino
Description: Maiolica dish with the arms of the Calini family of Brescia surrounded by "Neptune transforming Cygnus into a swan" in polychrome: Italian, Urbino, painted by Nicola di Gabriele Sbraghe, 1520 - 1530
  • Curnow, Celia, Italian Maiolica in the National Museums of Scotland. Edinburgh: NMS, 1992 
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