Art and Architecture

The Tavira Vase

Something quite extraordinary in a tiny museum in Tavira

I was wondering what to post today, the original plan had been to share something from last year but I am disliking the re-blog function so much I decided I really needed to do something original. But then the front door bell kept going and I was finding it impossible to concentrate. Thank goodness for Cee and her B&W challenge, inspiring me to take a look back into the archives. Just look what I discovered in January. Lots of arches and half circles for Cee.

You may recall some of these photographs of the loggia from my post earlier this year when I shared all on the Palácio da Galeria. It really is a beautiful structure, however what really caught my eye in my album was what else we did that day. On leaving the grandest house in Tavira, we had made our way to Tavira’s fascinating Islamic Art museum and a much older arch.

Islamic Art Museum
Núcleo Islâmico

Not only had I until today totally forgotten about this Islamic arch, but also what is under it – the Tavira Vase.  Now I admit the domes, arches and half-circles required for Cee’s challenge are a little difficult to see in the vase but Cee encourages us to be creative. So creative I am being with this extraordinary piece of art.
See the flock of doves

The vase dates from the Almoravid dynasty (11th century), possibly earlier and was discovered as its name suggests in Tavira. It is quite an amazing piece of sculpture, or as Jo’s husband’s say water feature!

Water would have been poured through the funnel, which would then run through a series of channels hidden within the vase interior before appearing out of some of the figurines to water the plant, probably a basil, that would have been planted in it. They suggest basil as that was once the plant of love, and the figurines on the vase depict a Berber wedding ceremony. Apparently grand houses would have had much larger versions in their gardens, I would have been delighted though just with this one.

20 comments on “The Tavira Vase

  1. Hi Becky

    My wife and I hope to see the eye watering vase in late September, when we visit Tavira. My fear is that we shall never want to leave it! cheers

    Liked by 1 person

    • You may not!! Tavira is wonderful . . . .we can’t wait to return in October.

      have a fabulous trip, September is a lovely time of year to go.


  2. How fascinating Becky

    Liked by 2 people

  3. A fascinating piece, I can see why you choose it.
    I hope you have a fabulous Christmas!

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Interesting. I should have had something like this for my basil this summer.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. A bit of history. Thanks for sharing Becky 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  6. This is fascinating, Becky. Also, had no idea Basil was the plant of love.

    Liked by 2 people

  7. If you hear that it’s gone missing you’d better come and check out our garden. I have a fancy for it to sit on the patio table. Give us a bit of style. 🙂 🙂 Thanks a lot!

    Liked by 3 people

  8. A wonderful post indeed. Imagine a basil plant in such a lovely container.

    Liked by 2 people

  9. Thanks Becky, this is a wonderful post. 😀

    Liked by 2 people

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