Syrup jar used for Scabious Water, Italy, 1648

Made:
1648 in Deruta
maker:
Unknown

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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 in 1648, fine polychrome maiolica, used for scabwort water

The Latin inscription painted on the side, Aqua Scabiosae, translates into English as “Scabious Water”. Water infused with pink, white and blue scabious flowers was stored in this earthenware jar, probably with a protective cover of vellum or paper tied with string.

The water was drunk to expel phlegm from the body, especially if coughs and colds were affecting the chest. Taken with theriac – an expensive thick sticky liquid medicine made from numerous ingredients – the treatment was used against plague.

Details

Category:
Medical Ceramic-ware
Object Number:
A632277
type:
syrup jar
taxonomy:
  • furnishing and equipment
  • container - receptacle
  • drug jar