Seljuk Lionhead Glazed Plaque - LO.1031, Origin: Anatolia, Circa: 13 th Century AD, Dimensions: 5.5" (14.0cm) high x 5.5" (14.0cm) wide, Collection: Islamic Art, Style: Seljuk, Medium: Frit. Round turquoise-glazed tile in the shape of a lion's face, partially chipped on one side. The face, surrounded by a dotted border, with bulging eyes, rounded cheeks, large nose and downturned mouth. The almost humanised leonine face features also small ears and an incipient mane fur line on the front. The lion was one of the favourite animals in Islamic iconography, often symbolising the Prophet Ali, while drinking water from the faucets in the form of lions' mouths was thought to bring recovery from ilnesses as well as longevity.
Ancient Near East