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made at Urbino, Italy

Postcard of Plate.
© National Museums Scotland


This maiolica plate was made at Urbino in Italy, perhaps at the Guido di Merlino Workshop, between 1540 and 1545.

The plate is painted in polychrome with the contest of 'Apollo and Marsyas' from Ovid's Metamorphosis. The underside is inscribed 'Apollo & Marsia'.

The satyr Marsyas foolishly entered into a reed playing competition with Apollo and was easily vanquished. Apollo had his fellow competitor flayed to death as a punishment. The woodland gods, satyrs and nymphs and shepherds wept so much at his death that their tears created a spring, the source of the river Marsyas in the ancient country Phrygia in Asia Minor.

Record details

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Online ID: 000-190-004-709-C
Image Rights Holder: National Museums Scotland
Project: 0098: National Museums Scotland
Project description | View all records in project
Ref: National Museums Scotland  A.510.8
Date: 1540 - 1545
Between 1540 and 1545
Material: Earthenware. Inscription: Apollo & Marsia
Dimensions: 55 mm H x 282 mm D
Subject: Ceramics : earthenware : Italy : Urbino
Who: Apollo (Depicted)
Auguste Ricard de Montferrand Collection (Previous owner)
Guido di Merlino, Urbino (Maker)
Marsyas (Depicted)
Where: Italy, Urbino
Description: Maiolica plate painted in polychrome with the contest of Apollo and Marsyas: Italian, Urbino, perhaps Guido di Merlino Workshop, 1540 - 1545
  • Curnow, Celia, Italian Maiolica in the National Museums of Scotland. Edinburgh: NMS, 1992 
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