Background of Delft
The origins of Delft are found in the Middle East. Tin ash was used in a glaze for pottery as early as the 9th century in Mesopotamia. Using white glaze over a dark or buff-colored pottery body created a “canvas” on which painters could show brilliant colors that did not appear well on the earlier pottery’s darker bodies.
Background of Polychrome Delft
Beginning in the last quarter of the 16th century, Italian artisans introduced tin-glazed pottery painted in polychrome colors into the Netherlands. The defining characteristics of this pottery are a paste that is cream to light buff-colored and decoration that includes geometric, floral, figural, and Chinese motifs painted in iron-red (orange), blue, green, and yellow.
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