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Lower half of a square tile from the Palazzo Petrucci: C.129-1927

Object information

Current Location: In storage


Lower half of a square tile from the Palazzo Petrucci


Maker: Unidentified Siena pottery




Cream earthenware, tin-glazed on the upper surface. Painted in dark blue, green, yellow, orange, brownish-red, and, on the border tile, black.
The lower half of a square tile is decorated with the lower part of a shield quartered with the arms of Piccolomini and Petrucci, and has a similar border with a mask in the spandrel.


History note: Purportedly purchased in Siena by F. Leverton Harris.

Legal notes

F. Leverton Harris Bequest, 1926

Measurements and weight

Depth: 2.1 cm
Height: 8.4 cm
Width: 13.4 cm

Relative size of this object

13.4 cm8.4 cm2.1 cm What does this represent?

Relative size of this object is displayed using code inspired by Good Form and Spectacle's work on the British Museum's Waddeson Bequest website and their dimension drawer. They chose a tennis ball to represent a universally sized object, from which you could envisage the size of an object.

Place(s) associated

  • Siena ⪼ Tuscany ⪼ Italy

Acquisition and important dates

Method of acquisition: Bequeathed (1926) by Harris, F. Leverton, The Right Hon.


16th century
Production date: circa AD 1509


This fragment fromed part of a tile pavement commissioned by Pandolfo Petrucci for the principal room in his palazzo in Siena. The room is thought to have been decorated between 1508 and Petrucci's death in 1512, and three of the tiles are dated 1509. The pavement comprises pentagonal tiles of two sizes, square tiles, and rectangular border tiles. Some of the square tiles are decorated with the quartered arms of Piccolomini and Petrucci, with trophies, or with figures in landscapes reminiscent of those by Pinturricchio, Signorell, and Genga. The majority are decorated with grotesques, and the pavement is one of the most outstanding illustrations of this genre on early sixteenth-century maiolica. Over 300 tiles from the pavement are in the Victoria & Albert Museum, and there are seventeen in the Museum für Kunst und Gewerbe, Hamburg. A number of others were listed by Rasmussen in his catalogue of that collection.

People, subjects and objects depicted

Components of the work

Decoration composed of high-temperature colours ( dark blue, green, yellow, orange, brownish-red, and black)
Upper Surface composed of tin-glaze

Materials used in production


References and bibliographic entries

Identification numbers

Accession number: C.129-1927
Primary reference Number: 48119
Stable URI

Audit data

Created: Saturday 6 August 2011 Updated: Thursday 11 August 2016 Last processed: Saturday 22 May 2021

Associated departments & institutions

Owner or interested party: The Fitzwilliam Museum
Associated department: Applied Arts

Citation for print

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The Fitzwilliam Museum (2022) "Lower half of a square tile from the Palazzo Petrucci" Web page available at: Accessed: 2022-12-08 00:04:55

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