Drug jar showing St John the Baptist, Italy, 1570-1630

Made:
1570-1630 in Deruta
maker:
Unknown
Left hand side - A97373, Syrup jug, Italian from Deruta, late 16th century or early 17th century, polychrome maiolica,

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Left hand side - A97373, Syrup jug, Italian from Deruta, late 16th century or early 17th century, polychrome maiolica,
Science Museum Group Collection
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum

Science Museum Group
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum

Syrup jug, Italian from Deruta, late 16th century or early 17th century, polychrome meiolin, figure of St. John the Evangelist, used for violet flower syrup

Medieval Christian teaching included the notion that illness and disease were the result of sin. Prayers were said to saints who could plead with God and aid the recovery of their devotees. The figure of St John, or St John the Evangelist, is painted on the drug jar on the right hand side. St John was a Christian saint and apostle and is credited with writing the fourth Gospel of the New Testament of the Bible. The jar was used to store syrup of violets, taken by the spoonful to expel gas from the stomach and intestines. “SPQR” (Senatus Populusque Romanus), the motto of Rome meaning “Senate and People of Rome” is painted on the side. It is shown here with a similar example depicting St Matthew (A97373).

Details

Category:
Medical Ceramic-ware
Object Number:
A97372
type:
drug jar
taxonomy:
  • furnishing and equipment
  • container - receptacle
credit:
Sotheby's