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The Artistic Culture of Central Asia and Azerbaijan in the 9th–15th Centuries. Vol. I. Ceramics.— Samarkand—Tashkent: IICAS, SMI ASIA, 2011.—256 p. Project Manager: Sh. Mustafayev Academic Editorial Board: K. Baypakov, Sh. Pidaev, A. Khakimov In charge of the publication: A. Khakimov Authors: K. Baypakov, O. Kuznetsova (Kazakhstan) B. Amanbaeva, V. Kol'chenko (Kyrgyzstan) Yu. Yakubov (Tajikistan) N. Byashimova, E. Muradova (Turkmenistan) D. Mirzaakhmedov (Uzbekistan) T. Dostiev (Azerbaijan) Translation into English: A. Ul’ko This book is published as a part of the project The Artistic Culture of Central Asia and Azerbaijan in the 9th–15th centuries, carried out by the International Institute for Central Asian Studies. The objective of the project is to systematise the academic knowledge and data related to a wide range of items of the material and artistic culture of the 9th–15th centuries, including ceramics, architecture, glass making, toreutics and other forms of applied arts. The publication is aimed at specialists as well as at the general public interested in the culture of the East. The authors bear the responsibility for the choice and representation of facts and opinions contained in this publication which do not express the views held by UNESCO. The terms and materials used in the publication do not contain the view held by UNESCO in relation to the legal status of any state, territory, and city, zone of influence or borders. ISBN 978-9943-11-084-7 (IICAS) ISBN 978-9943-17-044-5 (SMI-ASIA) © IICAS, 2011 Photo on cover page: Glazed washing vessel in the form of a lion, Shakhristan. Tajikistan

 CONTENTS To the Reader��������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������4 The Classical Art of Islam ����������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������6 Kazakhstan ����������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������22 K. Baypakov, O. Kuznetsova Kyrgyzstan������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������85 B. Amanbaeva, V. Kol’chenko Tajikistan ������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������128 Yu. Yakubov Turkmenistan�����������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������151 N. Byashimova, E. Muradova Uzbekistan�����������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������181 D. Mirzaakhmedov Azerbaijan������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������ 221 T. Dostiev Bibliography������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������ 249 Illustrations Unglazed ceramics �������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������33–48 Glazed ceramics (9th–early 13th century) ������������������������������������������������������������������������ 97–116 Glazed ceramics (13th–early 14th century)���������������������������������������������������������������������� 165–176 Glazed ceramics (14th–15th century) �����������������������������������������������������������������������������193–208 3

TO THE READER Located on the crossroads of the largest Eurasian trade routes, Central Asia has connected the empires of Rome, Byzantium and Iran with China, India—with the countries of the East- ern Europe since the ancient times, facilitating cultural exchange and dialogue between the East and the West. Powerful migration processes in the region, settling and assimilation of the peoples and tribes from the East, West, North and South of the continent influenced the formation of civilisations based on the symbiosis of different cultures, ethnic groups and religions, tolerance and common social mentality as well as on the absence of ethno-psychological obstacles to the perception and accumulation of cultural and technological achievements. As a result, the Kushan Empire, the states of the Parthians, Hephtalites, Sogdians, the Kon- guy Confederation and the Turkic Khaganate appeared and prospered in this region in dif- ferent historical periods. Particularly well known in history is the period from the 9th to the 15th century, the time of the reign of the Samanid, Karakhanid, Seljukid, Genghizid and Temurid dynasties, which did not only support the commercial and economic relations between the East and the West, but also left behind the evidences of a unique Islamic culture. High productivity indices, mon- etary and trade relations and active international contacts resulted in the fast rates of urn- banisation and demographic growth. The political unification of the huge territory spreading from China in the East to the Balkans in the West and from the Volga Region in the North to the Central India in the South powerfully stimulated the processes of cultural integration. The uniform Arabic language and the ideology of Islam spread all over the vast territories of the post-Caliphate Central Asia, Near and Middle East and Northern Africa and the ac- tive process of cultural exchange within the Islamic civilisation stimulated the development of a phenomenon known in Europe as ‘the Muslim Renaissance’. This period gave the world a group of brilliant thinkers, scholars, poets, philosophers and theologians who contributed to the world’s intellectual, scientific and cultural treasury. Such remarkable achievements in the economy and the culture of the peoples of the Is- lamic world reflected in the variety of architectural décor, the amount and the quality of craftsmen’s produce and was conducive to the creation of masterpieces of art. A detailed study of the rich historical heritage of Central Asian peoples can help identify the individual, specific as well as the common trends in the development of the material culture of Central Asia and the Near East. The archaeological and orientalist researches carried out in different Central Asian states over the last few decades have yielded significant academic results in various areas of the artistic culture of the time which, unfortunately, has not been adequately discussed or comprehensively studied even in the countries of the region. One of the less developed is the issue of cultural links and mutual influence between Central Asia and the Near East in the given period. 4

To the Reader In the light of the above the International Institute for Central Asian Studies (a UNESCO institute) launched a scientific research project. The Artistic Culture of Central Asia and Azer­ baijan in the 9th–15th century which involves wide-scale cooperation between the schol- ars of the whole region. The implementation of this project is aimed at the systematisation of materials in a wide range of the forms of applied arts and architecture of the 9th–15th cen- turies, the description of characteristic features and common trends in their chronological, historical and regional development and the identification of mutual links and influences in the development of the cultures of Central Asia and the Near East as well as the artistic contribution of a certain regional populace to the common treasury of the Eastern artistic culture. The most significant and characteristic directions of the studies of artistic culture encompass such forms of applied arts as ceramics, glass making, toreutics, textile manu- facture, ivory carving and architecture. I hope that this publication will be of interest to specialists as well as to the general pub- lic interested in the culture of the East. Yours faithfully, Shahin Mustafayev,  Director of the International Institute  for Central Asian Studies 5

THE CLASSICAL ART OF ISLAM Since the 8th–9th centuries the culture and art of the people on the huge territory from the mountains of Pamir, oases of Central Asian interfluve and the eastern steppes to the area near the Caspian Sea has been developing within the context of theological and aesthetic ide- as of the Muslim world. Today, when the cultural heritage of the former Soviet Union states is being given a different perspective, it seems reasonable to identify and interpret the artis- tic values created by the people of this northeast region of the Islamic world from the stand- point of new historical realities. The cultural integrity of this territory emerged in the Islam- ic period and received a new form in the 20th century in the Soviet republics of Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan. In 1920s, when these regions were made part of a single country and atheism was proclaimed the dominating ideology, Islam lost the social and governmental monopoly it had enjoyed there in the pre- vious centuries. Although the traditions of Islamic aesthetics and art continued to appear in various forms of culture, in the 20th century the artistic culture of these peoples was de- fined by a completely different social and aesthetic paradigm. In the late 20th century, after the disintegration of the USSR, a certain reanimation of Is- lamic values takes place in the new independent states of the Central Asia and in Azerbai- jan, caused by the development of national and cultural self-identity. The Islamic heritage as a centuries-old tradition once again becomes an important factor for self-identification. The political and social changes that took place in the post-Soviet time, the growth of interest towards studying national history and artistic heritage have created conditions for a more complete understanding of the development of medieval culture and art of the Islamic period. The concept of ‘Islamic art’ in its full sense in relation to the cultural heritage of the peo- ple of Central Asia and Azerbaijan can be considered within the period starting from the 9th to the early 20th century, while the period between the 9th and the 15th centuries can be re- garded as the basic stage of formation and development of a new style of the medieval art. The spread of Islam opened a new page in the history of the people of this region. The signifi- cance of this event is irrefutable: it is the art of the Islamic time that sets an example of a for- mation of a new multilateral community based on the principles of transcontinental symbiosis. Taking into consideration the universal value of the doctrine of Islam in the formation of principles and aesthetics of the Eastern medieval art, it seems quite right to use the term ‘Islamic art’ for the definition of the fundamental qualities and features of applied art and ar- chitecture in Central Asia and Azerbaijan in the given period. Despite some chronological discrepancies in the process of the spread of Islam in the east- ern regions of the Islamic world, the 9th and the 10th centuries may be viewed as the time when the first examples of Islamic art and architecture per se appear in Azerbaijan, Khar- asan and Maverannahr. Thus, in the southern regions of Central Asia the first monuments of religious architecture dated to the 9th–10th centuries—the Arab-ata mausoleum in Tim, the Ak-Astana mausoleum in Shurchi, the Samanids’ mausoleum in Bukhara—have survived 6

The Classical Art of Islam to our days thanks to the use of baked brick. Quite often Islamic constructions were erected on the places of former religious buildings. The mosque of Magokki Attari in Bukhara built on the place of the former Temple of the Moon may serve as an example of this. The first items made of glazed ceramics appear in the 9th century. They already bear the signs of new Is- lamic aesthetics, such as calligraphic inscriptions in Arabic, often taken from the Koran, a distinctive decorative style and so on. The period between the 9th and the 15th centuries is marked by intensive processes in econ- omy, political, public and cultural life, increased trade within the Caliphate, rapid growth of towns and handicraft production, as well as by the development of independent countries and dynasties in Iran, Khurasan, and Maverannahr. In the 10th–11th centuries Central Asia is characterised by active expansion of handicraft production in cities, as well as by an in- crease in the urban population and territory. Beginning from this period and throughout almost a millennium the urban culture of a new type has emerged and developed in the Cen- tral Asian interfluve. Its main features included the rapid growth of trading and craft areas, the inclusion of the region in the global Muslim culture, the wide interaction between the ur- ban and nomadic cultures. It is remarkable that the urban culture is developing in the north- east regions of Central Asia where, according to O. G. Bolshakov, ‘there is an intensive set- tlement of nomads’ (Belenitsky, Bolshakov in collaboration, 1973, p. 351). At the same time towns become the basic stronghold of the new religion. According to Grunebaum, ‘Islam from the very beginning was an urban formation both in spirit, and in terms of its main centres’. Towns are becoming the principal generators of new artistic styles, and the urban culture—the backbone of this period. At the same time, religion, trade and economy begin to play a huge role in the development of the urban culture. In the period before the’ invasion of the Mongols, such centres as Baylakan, Ganja, Samarkand, Bukhara, as well as the towns of Fergana and Khoresm play an important role in the cultural and commercial exchange between the West and the East. Islam completely changed the social, economic and urban planning infrastructure together with the architectural appearance of the cities of Central Asia and Azerbaijan. This is the time when trade and craft towns appear in their new plas- tic form, when urban planning and architectural priorities generally change. The structure of the simple internal hierarchy of a pre-Islamic town—the architecture of citadels and cas- tles with the adjoining countryside—now becomes much more complex. Such cities as Ter- mez, Samarkand and Bukhara become a large multifunctional organism. Various types of constructions appear and develop: palaces, fortifications and workshops, administrative, religious, commercial, technical and other buildings. From the 11th century, after the reign of the Samanids was over, the new dynasties of Turkic and Mongolian origin appear on the Central Asian political arena: the Gaznevides, Karakha- nids, Seljukides, Chagataides, and finally the Timirids. This process is also reflected in the ap- plied art of the region. Thus, in the 11th–12th centuries the glazed ceramics from Afrasiab is of- ten decorated in a ‘carpet’ (colourful) style which experts link with the growth of the Turkic population and its influence in Maverannahr (Tashkhojayev, 1967, p. 140, figs. 35–39). In the culture and art of the 11th – early 13th centuries, along with the formation of pan- Islamic style in the whole territory of the Caliphate, we can also see models of the local art schools based mainly on the symbiosis of Iranian and Turkic components. It was the pe- riod when the uniform artistic style of the Caliphate was finally formed. ‘In the 11th–13th cen- 7

The Artistic Culture of Central Asia and Azerbaijan in the 9th–15th centuries • Ceramics turies Central Asia stands among the most advanced civilisations of the East and the West. The new artistic style is completely formed. Soon it spreads over the whole Middle and Near East’ (Rempel, 1978, p. 28). The Mongolian invasion in the early 13th century influenced the des- tinies of many peoples of the Islamic world so seriously that it can be regarded as a certain chronological boundary which divided the Middle Ages in two periods. It struck a serious blow to the economy, trade, political and spiritual life of the people of the Caliphate, defeat- ing its religious and political establishment. The murder of the last Caliph of the Abbasid dy- nasty in 1258 allowed Grunebaum to consider this date as the end of the period of classical Islam. However Islam continues to keep its positions in the Middle and Near East ‘the um- mah has already reached full maturity and independence which based on its own force’ (Grunebaum, 1988, p. 186). Moreover, Genghis khan’s descendants, having assimilated with the local population, create their own dynasties and a new atmosphere of court life and art which, however, was based mostly on the Muslim traditions. By the late 13th – ear- ly 14th centuries towns revive and, despite numerous local conflicts and wars between dy- nasties, the political and cultural life of the people of the Muslim world regains stability. In the end of the 14th century Amir Temur ascended to the throne of Maverannahr to found a new powerful empire, which made a huge impact on the character of historical and cul- tural processes not only in the medieval East, but also in the West. The upper chronological boundary of this project is set the late 15th – early 16th centuries, which is the period of the deciline of the Timirids’ dynasty in the Middle East and Maver- annahr, marking the end of a brilliant, over a century-long period of its rule. From the 16th century Central Asia slumps into the time of economic stagnation and isola- tionism, the Great Silk Road practically stops functioning, and the intercultural contacts within the whole Middle East collapse. The epicentre of the Timirids’ culture moves to the Northern India where Babur, the bright follower of the traditions of this dynasty creates a new empire. In Azerbaijan and Iran in the early 16th century the dynasty of Sefevides comes to power, the Shiite branch of Islam becomes the state religion, and art enters a new stage of devel- opment. Although the traditions of ‘the Temurid style’ do continue, and to a certain extent support the artistic culture of the Sefevides, from now on the directions of artistic develop- ment of the peoples of Central Asia, Azerbaijan and Iran diverge. In Volume 4 of The Histo- ry of the Civilisations of Central Asia published by UNESCO and devoted to the medieval culture and art of the 8th – late 15th centuries this period is also regarded as an independent one. The discrepancies in the definition of the in the starting date of the period (the 8th cen- tury, while in our case it is the 9th century) can be explained by the fact that the formation of Muslim art in the Arabic world and in the Near East went ahead of the similar processes in the Central Asian region (The History..., 2000). Thus, the period between the 9th and the 15th centuries, despite all its historical and cultural features, represents a whole and single period, in which the achievements in art set a certain standard of the Muslim civilisation and the medieval aesthetic vision of the world. In this connection the question of general characteristics and scientific definitions of the cultural content of the period seems quite important. Writing about the culture and art of the Muslim East of the 9th–15th centuries, in the last century scientists often used the terms borrowed from the European academic vocabulary. This particularly concerns the term Renaissance when it is used in connection with the cul- 8

The Classical Art of Islam ture and art of the Muslim East. After Adam Metz entitled his book The Muslim Renaissance in the 9th–10th centuries, this expression grew into a subject of the special issue connected with attempts to make a comparative and typological analysis and reveal common features in the Eastern and the Western cultures. It is necessary to underline that this issue has subse- quently went beyond the limits designated by Metz. As it is admitted in the preface to the Rus- sian edition (Metz, 1966, p. 8), the title had been given by the author without any special conceptual consideration 1. D. E. Bertels, the author of the preface to the book, paid particu- lar attention to the issue of interpretation of the title of the book. Consequently, the opinion of scientists was divided—a part of researchers, unconditionally having accepted this ter- minology, used it in the researches in relation to the 10th–11th centuries, while others under- lined its artificial character, semantic awkwardness and the lack of reasonable ground to ap- ply the term ‘the Renaissance’ in a non-European historical context. R. Hartman who gave his own interpretation of the title of the book, nevertheless wrote that ‘it (the title) does not give the book any special value and is not appropriate (Metz, 1966. 8p). V. V. Bartold considered such definitions as ‘the European Renaissance’ and ‘blossoming of Muslim culture’ compa- rable to a certain extent. However, referring to other critic of the title of the book, K. Bekker, Hartman agreed with his opinion that it would be misfortune if under the influence of this book ‘the corresponding centuries of a Muslim era are viewed as the Renaissance period’ with all features which are usually linked to this concept (Metz, 1966, p. 9). Approximately similarly controversial was the evaluation of the title of the book made by I. J. Krachkovski. In one case he calls the definition given to the 10th century as a century of ‘Islamic revival’, in other—de- fines it as ‘the confused term invented by one of scientists’ (Metz, 1966. p. 10). The supporters of the use of this term in a context of the analysis of Eastern civilisations at times put various content to this concept. So, R. Frye (Frye, 1955. p. 37), on the basis of the material collected in Central Asia and Iran, considered any rise in a culture a ren- aissance. While V. M. Stein (1961), analysing the medieval Chinese literature, interpreted this concept as the revival of the elements of the ancient art. The Soviet historians of me- dieval literature and culture of Georgia (Nutsubidze, 1947), Central Asia (Zhirmunsky, 1961), Armenia (Chaloyan, 1963), and Azerbaijan (Gadzhiev, 1980) were of a similar opin- ion. The term Renaissance in relation to the ancient and medieval culture of the whole East, and the Middle East in particular, was depply interpreted by the academician N. I. Konrad. On the basis of the comparative and typological analysis of the phenomenon of the Euro- pean and, as he calls it, the Eastern Renaissance movement, he interpreted this concept from the standpoint of culturology in his article About Renaissance, which he simultane- ously published in two anthologies of his scientific work (Konrad, 1972; 1974. p. 235–265). N. I. Konrad considers the attempts to overcome the medieval dogmatism and to move away from the religious way of thinking to the secular one the common feature of the Ren- aissance phenomena both in the West and in the East. Contrary to the generally accepted point of view, N. I. Konrad does not quite consider the ideas of humanism and the apologia of a personality with its sensual and spiritual attributes the principal feature of a Renaissance. 1 A .Metz’s answer about the title of the book does not mean it was given randomly. It will suffice to say that Metz was a follower of Ranke and Burkhard, the latter being the founder of an independent branch of history, the phenomenology of the European Renaissance. Probably, Metz’s decision was influenced by his subconscious intention to link the topic of his book with the issues discussed in the works of his teacher. 9

The Artistic Culture of Central Asia and Azerbaijan in the 9th–15th centuries • Ceramics This, he thinks, lies in the secularisation of the theoretical thought and the liberation from the web of scholasticism: ‘Freedom of thought was opposed to dogmatism, while the crea- tive impetus opposed scholasticism. This was, as it seems to me, the most important inno- vation that the Renaissance brought to the history of human thought. This period in its east- ern and western variants shows us the ways through which the creative freedom of human thought was being reached then. As it appears, there were two ways: the way of rationalism and the way of mysticism’ (Konrad, 1972. p. 234). Despite the brilliant analysis of the monu- ments of Eastern literature and a deep characteristic of the cultural relations and parallels between the West and the East, the Soviet historiographic tradition influences Konrad’s ob- servations. This tradition is based on the division of the cultures of the ‘pre-socialist’ time in two antagonistic groups: the reactionary, feudal (bourgeois) culture and the progressive, democratic (belonging to the people) one. The hermeneutic and deep thoughts of the sci- entist, unfortunately, concerned only the literary heritage and had a very general charac- ter. He did not take into account the great value of Islam in the development of plastic arts, such as architecture, crafts and so on., which prevented him from giving a more distinct and sound answer to the question on the legitimacy of the use of this terminology in rela- tion to Iran or Central Asia. In the 1960s–1970s this issue haunted the leading specialists in the history of arts and architecture of Central Asia, but in their interpretation, it was more of a rhetorical character and did not concern the essence of this concept. G. A. Pugachenkova and L. Rempel in their fundamental work on the history of arts use this term not only in re- lation to the art and architecture of Maverannahr in the 14th–15th centuries, but in a wider geographical context. However, they use it quite casually and more as a reproach compared to the European Renaissance: ‘The period meant to proclaim the new ideological beginnings and the artistic solutions that, unfortunately, did not bring about any further development, the development which in Europe led to the era of the High Renaissance in the late 15th century.’ (Pugachenkova in collaboration, 1965. p. 318). But in her next work Pugachenkova stresses the issue of the essence of the term the Timirids’ Renaissance: ‘Does the term the Timirids’ Renaissance disclose the essence of new phenomena in creative art … and do these ideas correspond to the concept of Renaissance?’ (Pugachenkova, 1976. p. 106–107). The intona- tion of this rhetorical question implies, probably, a negative answer, but the author does not offer a detailed explanation of her position, which is mostly due to the fact that the name of Amir Temur was ostracised in the Soviet historiography. After the former republics of the USSR became independent, this theme attracted consid- erable interest both in the Western, and in the post-Soviet literature. Thus, in relation to cul- ture of Iran and Central Asia in the 10th–11th centuries, and particularly in the Timirids’ period, the term Renaissance began again to be used for the purposes of science as well as propaganda, to bring about the rehabilitation of the contribution of the Muslim East to the general devel- opment of the world civilisation. So, some scholars from Uzbekistan used the term the East- ern Renaissance to characterise the periods of development in the spiritual culture of Mav- erannahr in the 9th–11th centuries and the 14th–15th centuries (Hairullaev, 1993. p. 356, 360). In the recent years attempts were made to identify common features in the art of the Euro- pean Renaissance and the miniature painting of the Middle East of the 15th century, but with- out stressing the issue of the Eastern Renaissance as a whole (Khakimov, 2004). Attempts to reveal the features of the Eastern Renaissance based on architectural material were made 10

The Classical Art of Islam in a number of publications, including Sh. Askarov’s latest book The Timirids’ Architecture where he mentions five Renaissances which took place in the cultural history of the Middle East in the 9th–15th centuries (Askarov, 2009, p. 10–12). However, it is necessary to empha- sise that most of the researchers—historians, orientalists, culturologists, theorists of literature and architecture—interpret the concept of the Renaissance more as a cultural or, in some cases, political rise, and do not relate it to the European Renaissance. The term can be used in such a figurative meaning without causing much damage to the semantics and sense of the concept, but in this case it is not productive: neither from the historical, nor from the scientific perspec- tive. What seems really important is the unanimous recognition of the public life of the 9th– 15th centuries as the main object of extrapolations of this term, what confirms the extraordi- nary value of the cultural content of the given period and it only underlines its importance. The second important aspect is the emphasis on the universal role of Islam in the formation of the artistic principles of the given period. Thus, the main question posed by the opponents of this definition, that is, what Islam or the Islamic art actually revived in the 9th–15th centuries, has never been properly answered. As for the terms Eastern Renaissance and Timirids’ Renaissance, here again the historical and cultural interpretations sound reasonable, but they are far from being indisputable when we analyse any samples of artistic material. Where the use of this terminology is concerned to this publication in the description of the processes in the applied art, the term ‘the Renais- sance’ does not properly reflect the content of the material and features of the development of artistic crafts, which is evident from the main items. Regarding architecture, here again we should use a differentiated approach both to the period, and to the objects of the compar- ative typological analysis and to work out more profound and distinct criteria of the usage of the terminology. The use of such terms is, indeed, tempting, but at the same time it is very unreliable. Judging from the actual material and the analysis of the available samples of ap- plied art and monuments of architecture of this period, the term the classical art of the Muslim East seems more natural and pertinent. The further cultural development shows a high level of standard of the art and architecture of the given period. The artistic culture of Central Asia and Azerbaijan in the 9th–15th centuries also testifies to the classical character of the art of the pe- riod and the extraordinary aesthetic value and unique character of its monuments. A large amount of scientific literature is devoted to the subject Islam and the Fine Arts; the bibliography on the topic is given in a number of studies (Bolshakov, 1969; Weimarn, 1968; 1974). The researchers unanimously consider the absence of icons in the Islamic art its most distinctive feature connected with the Islam’s ideological taboo concerning the depiction of human figures. This iconoclastic prohibition played a leading role in the formation of or- namental styles of the Islamic art. The ground for this prohibition lies in the Prophet Mu- hammad’s struggle against idolatry and polytheism of the jahiliyah period for the crea- tion of a single, monotheistic religion. The Nestorians, who also opposed icons, and whom the Christian church and the decrees of the Cathedral of Constantinople recognised as her- etics, indirectly influenced the decision to prohibit images in Islam. Despite this prohibi- tion, from the first centuries of Islam to the 12th–13th centuries, graphic forms of living be- ings can still be seen on the monuments of applied art and in the interiors of buildings in the countries of the Caliphate. There were several reasons for the taboo to spread so slow- ly. Firstly, in the Middle Age, the religious information spread rather slowly and passively 11

The Artistic Culture of Central Asia and Azerbaijan in the 9th–15th centuries • Ceramics from the centres of Islam to its outlying regions. Secondly, the traditions of the pre-Islamic heritage in the conquered countries, especially in the nomadic and rural zone far from ur- ban sites, were quite strong. Thirdly, new local ruling dynasties appeared in the territory of the Caliphate. The last circumstance supported the development of the hedonistic court culture, which often ignored at least some prohibitive commandments of Islam. In the late 7th – early 8th centuries the Arabs occupy Central Asia and Islam spreads over the region; however, only from the 9th–10th centuries these events become reflected in the lo- cal culture and art. At this particular time a new ornamental and decorative style appears and develops, the style, which gave rise to the so-called classical period in the Muslim art. A new period in the art of Central Asia begins. From the 8th century we see how the monu- mental painting and sculpture of the previous centuries, which were widely used in the monu- ments of the region in the pre-Islamic time now gradually disappear. The graphic image cul- ture gives way to the ornamental art which becomes one of the dominant forms in the Muslim aesthetics, defining the stylistic features of artistic craft and of the decorations of buildings throughout the whole medieval period. In many respects it was related to the fact that Islam as a dominating religion, refused to use painting and sculpture to propagate its ideas unlike Christianity and Buddhism. Islam purposefully eradicated the art heritage of the early Mid- dle Ages for the ideological reasons. It was reflected most clearly in the architecture: the vis- ual shape of towns changed in the Islamic time. The religious architecture, such as mosques, madrasahs, mausoleums becomes a plastic and semantic dominant in the new urban land- scape over the whole territory of the Caliphate. In the 9th–11th centuries the artistic craft, which actively develops along with the growth of feudal commercial towns, takes the promi- nent place in the life of the Caliphate’s countries side by side with religion and science. With the development and strengthening of the Muslim religion, we see an increase in the nega- tive attitude to figurative forms in art, as well as to images of living beings on the products of applied art, which were allowed in the first centuries of Islam. The character of architecture also changes, which in combination with religious prohi- bitions shifted the position of sculpture and wall painting, an integral part of interior dec- oration in secular and religious constructions of the pre-Islamic time. In various regions of the Islamic world this process went in different directions and lasted many decades, and the prohibition on depicting living beings in Islam had its own complex and long his- tory. It will suffice to say that in the first centuries of Islam the images of people and ani- mals could be seen in many mosques, as at first they were established in old Zoroastrian, Christian or other religious edifices where some paintings remained. The theological con- ception incorporating an extremely negative attitude towards the depiction of living beings appears only by the late 8th – early 9th centuries. In the 9th century there the figurative im- ages in the halls of the Caliph Al-Muhtadi were destroyed for religious reasons. Gradually the orthodox attitude to painting strengthened its positions in the Muslim world. In the 11th– 13th centuries theologians demanded that images of animals and people be forbidden even in the decorations of domestic and woven items, which had never been subjected to criticism in the first centuries of Islam. Under these unfortunate theological conditions the painting in Maverannahr lived out its days. The wall paintings and sculptures found in the palaces of the 8th–9th centuries near Samarkand (Penjikent, Afrasiab) and Bukhara (Varakhsha) shows the magnificent decline of the painting culture of the Early Medieval Sogd. In the Sa- 12

The Classical Art of Islam manids’ period when the romantic past was glorified, the interiors of palaces were still dec- orated with paintings and sculptural reliefs depicting scenes of hunting and king’s parties and epic stories, reviving the life of ancient rulers. The paintings in the palaces of Afrasi- ab and Varakhsha are good examples of the above. The same situation could be observed in the neighbouring Khurasan. The motifs of the Sasanian art are found in the composi- tions of the wall paintings and carved stucco of the 8th–9th centuries, found in the buildings of the Nishapur palace. Here the monumental and solemn pathos of the Sasanian art gives way to the stylised decorative compositions of the Islamic time. In the 9th–11th centuries the ancient tradition to paint the interiors of baths continued to ex- ist, which, according to some medieval philosophers and doctors, such as Ar-Rasi, Ibn-Sina and others, was beneficial for a person’s health. According to Ibn-Sina, a true bath must have ‘ of good work, of sheer beauty, like two loving people, like parks, gardens and gallop- ing horses and animals’ (Bolshakov, 1969. pp. 142–156). It is significant that the themes listed above are of an abstract, entertaining character without any historical or literary plot. Possibly, Ibn Sina himself saw such paintings in the 10th century in Bukhara and other towns of Mav- erannahr and Khurasan. The ruins of 11th century baths still remain in Termez and Nisa with ornamental paintings made with a waterproof paint on the walls. However, in the late 11th cen- tury the leaders of the orthodox Islam definitely rejected the images of living beings in public places (Belenitsky in collaboration, 1973, p. 281). O. G. Bolshakov offers a number of quota- tions from Al-Ghazali, connected with the prohibition of images. In one of them the theolo- gian encourages true believers to destroy images on the walls of baths. This appeal contra- dicts Ibn Sina’s statements about the therapeutic value of the paintings in the baths made in the 10th century. According to Al-Ghazali, it is enough ‘… to spoil the faces on the images in order to make them untrue,’ and in case it is impossible, simply to leave this indecent place (Belenitsky in collaboration, 1973, p. 296). Another quote from Al-Ghazali concerns directly handicraft items: ‘… as to the images on pillows and carpets used for sitting, it is not reprehen- sible; the same is about images on plates and bowls, excluding vessels in the form of a figure; thus, tops of some censers have the form of a bird; it is forbidden (haram), so the part with the image should be broken’. Thus, it was forbidden to manufacture things with figurative im- ages, and pre-Islamic unglazed items with sprigs were particularly exposed to the prohibition. Such zoomorphic ceramic items are extremely rare in Central Asia in the 10th–11th centuries, but they are found in the materials of archaeological sites of medieval Azerbaijan: Baylakan, Shamkir, Shabran etc. We can find vessels with plastic details made in the form of a bull, a ram, a horse, a bird, a snake etc. At the same time, flat images drawn on glazed ceramics and the ones on stamped or painted ceramics are acceptable even from the viewpoint of such a radical theologian as Al-Ghazali. In the light of the above, the statements made by some Uzbek archaeologists and historians of art, that firstly, the depiction of living beings on 11th– 12th centuries ceramic items can be regarded as the demonstration of anti-Muslim and anti- Caliphate tendencies; second, the images of living beings were banned in the first centuries of Islam, not from the 10th century when the Muslim ideology was completely formed, seem groundless (Belenitsky in collaboration, 1973, p. 280). In the 10th–12th centuries the figurative motifs were still used in the decoration of some palaces, which shows the attitude of ruling circles and aristocracy to the prohibition of im- ages. So, in the 11th–12th centuries, wall painting and sculpture continues to exist in vari- 13

The Artistic Culture of Central Asia and Azerbaijan in the 9th–15th centuries • Ceramics ous towns of Maverannahr, although only sporadically. Good samples of the carved stucco of the 11th–12th centuries from the palace of the rulers of Termez with an image of fantastic beings in a flat relief—lions with human heads—are a good evidence of the aspiration of lo- cal artists to revisit the topics of the previous centuries. Monumental paintings and sculp- tural reliefs found in a palace at Lashkari Bazar in Afghanistan confirm the specific atti- tude of the rulers of this time to figurative painting. Figures of soldiers and personal guard, in robes of various colours and with maces in hands, were depicted in full stature on the walls of a huge hall, probably, a throne room. The poses are static, the Mongoloid faces resemble characters from the scenes in the paintings on the glazed ceramics of the 11th–13th centuries found in Iran. Such formal type of painting was not unique at that time. It is also neces- sary to mention the wall paintings made during the reign of the Karakhanids from Afrasiab (Samarkand) with the images of human figures, animals, dogs, hunting scenes, discovered by a Franco-Uzbek archaeological expedition. However, it is true that all attempts to revive the traditions of pre-Islamic figurative painting did not stem from the demands of the pe- riod. Frequently they were in opposition and were connected more with individual tastes of some ruler not at all indifferent to the earthly pleasures and romanticism of the olden days. So, these examples show that some rulers of that period were quite tolerant to figurative painting scenes despite being ‘true believers’. Judging by these and other written sources describing the riches and luxury of the rulers of Muslim dynasties of the period under study, we may conclude that some kind of hedonistic culture of palace life existed and prospered in the depths of Islam; and the aristocracy close to the court imitated it. Representatives of ruling dynasties hardly listened to Al-Ghazali’s appeal to confine themselves to ceramic bowls and not to use gold and silver ones. However, expensive items made of gold and silver which rulers and aristocracy used, have survived only in small numbers. Regarding the piec- es of art made of glazed ceramics, bronze or glass, the historians of arts and archaeologists have to be content with things belonging mainly to the middle urban class of the popula- tion. The lower layers of urban and rural population could not afford such expensive items of artistic craft. However, despite the secret disobedience of the elite of the court and rich classes, in general the Muslim taboos and rules were generally accepted and their influence shaped the general development of the artistic culture of the period. As a consequence of the intensive growth of towns and integration processes in the 9th– 15th centuries, the production of craftsmen becomes not only the objects of international trade, but also an original form of spiritual contacts and mutual enrichment of the cultures of Muslim people. The conditions of such exchange resulted in different parallels and nu- merous analogies in the forms and decor of the items from Maverannahr, Khurasan, Iran, Azerbaijan and other countries of the Middle and Near East. The art in each region of the Is- lamic world, including Central Asia and medieval Azerbaijan, had its unique features formed by the previous historical and cultural traditions. In the 9th–15th centuries the pre-Islamic images, plots and new motifs become frequent in the decor of numerous items of applied art—items made of ceramics, bronze, wood, glass, carpets, fabrics. At times they are reflect- ed in the decoration of architectural monuments. However, for the general history of cul- ture, the period between the 9th and the 15th centuries was a period, when boundaries were erased, narrow local traditions broke and a new integral ‘Islamic art’ becomes the commonly shared heritage of the people who inhabited the Arabic Caliphate. 14

The Classical Art of Islam The evolution of Islamic art in the 9th–15th centuries can be followed by examining various artistic ceramic items from Central Asia and Azerbaijan. This kind of applied art is the most abundant and accessible source for researchers, and therefore one of the most interesting aspects of studying this unique culture that shows the historical development and forma- tion of local schools of ceramic art within the huge world of Islamic culture. Ceramic items of this period reflect the formation of new canons by abandoning old traditions or adapt- ing them; they also demonstrate the appearance of new kinds of décor and perfect techno- logical methods, which testifies to the results of the integration of the people of the Middle and Near East within the Islamic civilisation. The development of pottery in Central Asia and Azerbaijan occurs in the 9th–11th centu- ries when technological and artistic methods of ceramic production change considerably, although in the 7th–8th centuries the pre-Islamic ceramics of Central Asia was quite devel- oped and included a wide range of items. In the Central Asian region there were a few cen- tres of ceramic production in this period, which to a certain extent influenced the princi- ples of pottery manufacture in the neighbouring territories. The towns of Sogd were such centres in the 8th century and their ceramic traditions influenced the items from Ustrush- ana, Chach, Semirechye in the Southern Kazakhstan. The ceramics of the western regions of Central Asia, Merv and Khoresm differed a little from the forms of the Sogdian ceram- ics and had its own, Caspian style which resembled the Early Medieval ceramics from Az- erbaijan. A similar scheme of interrelation of traditions and local features of artistic ceram- ics within one region remained in place during the whole period. Ceramic products were in constant demand, while such items were difficult to export it because of their fragility; therefore, they are characterised more by the local traditions of art. It is necessary to note that highly artistic ceramic products were also objects of international trade. However, in general, as compared to toreutics, ceramics was less influenced by the tendencies typical for the whole Caliphate or even Muslim art in the 9th–15th centuries In the 9th–10th centuries pottery is widely used by people in the everyday life. Large quar- ters of potters sprang up in the towns of Maverannahr, where they produced both ordinary and unique ceramic items. In the ceramics of this time we can see considerable changes: new forms of items appeared along with different technical and artistic methods of their decoration; their decor changes too. Previous motifs continue to exist, but become more or- namental. The botanical and geometric ornament prevails on the items; Arabic inscriptions appear even more frequently and gradually turn into unreadable patterns. In this period in Central Asia and medieval Azerbaijan appear leading ceramic centres and two basic versions develop in the ceramics of the time, namely glazed and unglazed ceramics. The unglazed ceramics of the 9th–12th centuries is represented by tall jugs, huge khums, flat flasks and small cups and mugs. In terms of the methods of manufacturing unglazed ceramics, it can be divided into several groups. In the 8th–9th centuries vessels with ap- plied stylised images of animals and people were still widespread; however in the follow- ing centuries the tradition of plastic modelling of elements of ceramic crockery gradually dies away, though interesting glazed water jugs in the form of fantastic beings were found in Ustrushana. Due to the necessity to expand the manufacture, these archaic forms give way to a new technique. The barbotine technique in the form of flat clay rolls with a pattern 15

The Artistic Culture of Central Asia and Azerbaijan in the 9th–15th centuries • Ceramics spreads in Khurasan and Maverannahr where they arrived from the Middle East. The un- glazed ceramics of the 9th–10th centuries is represented by red clay items with a stamped pattern. In the late 11th century this type of ceramics is replaced by grey clay whole-stamped ceramics imitating bronze ware in forms and ornament, which is evident from the methods of its production and its ornament. Geometric, botanical, and zoomorphic motifs, as well as inscriptions, comprised the basic repertoire of the décor of stamped ceramic items. Com- bining these motifs, masters created ornamental patterns that went horizontally around the whole body of a vessel. Repetition and rhythm of a certain circle of motifs is the basis of the decorative style of these items, where the pre-Islamic motifs, images merge in a uni- form decorative pattern with the newer kinds of ornament. The ceramic items from Ustrush- ana were of a special beauty representing a wide range of items: vessels of grey clay with stamped ornamentation, sphero-conical vessels for keeping mercury and portable ceremo- nial fireplaces. The ceramic items were of various types and different in their purpose, forms and ornamentation. The fireplaces of the 10th–12th centuries with relief decor, found in large numbers in central and eastern regions of Maverannahr—in Samarkand, Bunjikat, Khojend and Akhsiket, show that the cult of fire remained in this region in the early stages of Islam. In the following centuries the stamped ceramics did not develop any further in Maveran- nahr, but became popular in the western regions of Central Asia: in Merv, Nisa and so on. In the 10th–12th centuries unglazed painted ceramics of old type reminding similar ves- sels of the Bronze Age spreads throughout the towns of Central Asia. The surface of jugs was covered by a large drawing of a botanical or geometric character made of a reddish- brown mineral paint. Unglazed domestic vessels, such as khums of large and middle size, jugs, pots, bowls, flasks etc., were produced in large numbers. Among them there are many items, with grace and expressiveness that places them apart from the regular items. In the 9th–10th centuries, water vessels in the form of a bird called murgobi (liter- ally ‘water bird’), as well as various chirags (lanterns) were produced in the northeastern Maverannahr—in Fergana and Shash. In the late 8th – early 9th centuries glazed ceramics, which like the barbotine unglazed ce- ramics was brought here from the western regions of the Islamic world, appears and becomes popular in the towns of Maverannahr and Khurasan. In the 9th–12th centuries it reached there a peak of near perfection—from the artistic and technical points of view. During this peri- od appear new centres of ceramic art. Afrasiab (Samarkand) was the main centre of glazed ceramics of Maverannahr; the ceramics of Shash, Fergana, Chaganian etc., were also fa- mous. By the 12th century the area of distribution of the Afrasiab type ceramics is narrowed to the bounds of Maverannahr. The ceramics of Fergana, Shash and Chaganian, though quite original, bears the stylistic features of the Afrasiab ceramic items. The glazed ceramics of this time is represented by two principal kinds: open forms and closed ones. The latter is usually represented by tall and small samples: jugs with a spherical body and pot-like bowls. The decor covered the exterior surfaces of the body or mouth in horizontal belts. Often it is a botanical or geometric ornament, while early items had stylised images of birds. The glazed crockery of the open form considerably surpasses the jug-like items in numbers. It was produced in large numbers, which caused a certain standardisation of some variants. Plates, dishes are almost identical in size and often have a similar composition of the decor. The Afrasiab ceramics stood apart from other types 16

The Classical Art of Islam not only due to its high quality of clay, glaze and paint, but also due to a refined artistic taste evident in its forms and drawings. Sprouts of various plants, pomegranate fruits, tulips, roses and other flowers are the most frequent motifs that can be found on the items of the Afrasiab ceramics. Quite often the let- ters of inscriptions and tails and beaks of birds turn into botanical patterns. Geometric or- nament in the form of squares, triangles and woven figures dominates on many items, which can probably be explained by active development of mathematical sciences during this pe- riod. We can often come across the images of a pheasant, a cock, a pigeon, a duck and such animals as argali, horse, cheetah and lion. The images of fish that remain of sacral value are also frequent. All these motifs are quite often found together on one item. Anthropomor- phous images and general scenes are very rarely seen on the ceramic items from Afrasiab. The style of images used in the pre-Mongolian ceramics from Afrasiab had its own evolu- tion. In the decor of items made in the 9th–10th centuries, the drawing is still to some extent integral and the images natural, though the tendency towards their stylisation can be clearly seen. In the 11th century the style changes essentially: the ornamental and decorative pat- terns dominate in all elements of drawing. The process of gradual transformation of im- ages of birds or animals into ornament through their stylisation is very typical for the pe- riod. In one case the tail of a bird or animal suddenly passes into a magnificent botanical curl, in another zoomorphic images turn into an element of inscription, which in its turn again becomes a pattern and is not readable any more, in a third case small figures of birds repeated many times on an item become a part of ornamental drawing. The decor of this time is marked by the high culture of drawing, grace and subtle feeling of colour. It is an evi- dence of the fact that along with masters of ceramic form, there was a special group of art- ists who were engaged in the decoration of ceramic items. Round, flat dishes with thin drawing in the form of inscriptions and birds stylised into letters against a white background, which are typical of Samarkand, are particularly elegant. The pattern was applied along the rim of a dish, leaving the most part of the surface white, which made these items both beautiful and unusual. The potters of Maverannahr, in master- ing the technology of glazed ceramics, achieved amazing success in discovering decorative potential of colour and thus compensated the loss that had been inflicted on the art of these regions by the Arabic invasion when the early medieval wall painting was almost completely destroyed as a genre. The technology of glaze played a big role in achieving artistic effects in the items of glazed ceramics. In the early stages of its development alkaline glaze was used most often, while later tin and lead glaze became more widely spread. The first two types of glaze (alkaline and tin) were opaque and were used in decorating things with a monochromatic incised drawing. Most fully the skill of artists could be seen when the transparent lead glaze was used, making the surface of items particularly lustrous. Lead glaze helped to save and increase the quality of colour in under glaze painting. The glazed ceramics of the 10th century from Afrasiab with specific olive-green and brown-ochre colour is marked with a high level of skill; zoomor- phic themes, flowers and fruits are widely presented in its decor. On these items the stylised birds, animals and fishes are still recognisable, the drawing is quite plastic and shows real lines which in a century, as well as warm inscriptions, would turn into an unreadable pat- tern. The glazed ceramic items produced in Shash, Fergana, Khoresm and Chaganian were 17

The Artistic Culture of Central Asia and Azerbaijan in the 9th–15th centuries • Ceramics famous during that time. In the 10th–12th centuries the ceramics from Shash and Fergana olive-green colours with brown, ochre and red, black and yellow hues becomes most widely spread. The ornaments of these ceramic items include the images of animals, birds and fish, reflecting the local symbols as well as the folklore and poetic images of the population. The iconography of some images is borrowed from the repertoire of the early Medie- val toreutics of the same areas. The images of ducks, storks, and deer with branchy horns are a good evidence of that. The proximity to metal ware is quite often stressed by a lined background. Botanical and geometric ornament is not so frequent here as on the ceramic items from Afrasiab, multi-figured compositions are also rare, while the images of living beings preserve the integrity of silhouettes and naturalism. The period between the early 9th and the 13th centuries was a period that has its own values; at the same time it was a certain ‘time bridge’, the bridge from the art of the 7th–8th centuries with its rich figurative content to the artistic culture of the Muslim world of the 14th–15th cen- turies, built on other aesthetic principles of omnipresent ornamental and decorative art. The Mongolian invasion in the early 13th century delivered a serious blow to the econo- my and culture of the oases; many towns were destroyed and the economy collapsed. Only in the 14th–15th centuries the people of Central Asia began to revive their culture and state- hood. This time is marked by the revival of towns, building of new grandiose architectural monuments, development of arts, poetry and crafts. The rise of public and cultural life in the empire of Amir Temur and the Timirids took place in the period when the role of Islam considerably increased. At the same time a clear secular direction began to appear in the art and craft, which was most evidently embodied in the court art of the ruling dynasty. The process of the integration of local art traditions, which had be- gun in the Arab Muslim world in the 8th–12th centuries, continued in the post-Mongolian pe- riod. However, it is not the religion that is dominant in this historical situation, but the proc- esses connected with the aspiration of Amir Temur’s and his successors towards creation of a huge centralised empire with a policy directed at the revival of trade and economic rela- tions and the concentration of the best craftsmen of the Middle and Near East in the capitals of the Timirids’ empire. Samarkand, which possessed by that time a rich historical and cul- tural tradition, was the capital city at the time of Amir Temur and the first Timirids. Bukhara, Herat, Meshed, Tabriz, Ganja Shahrisabz, Tashkent, Taraz and Otrar were recognised hubs of arts and crafts, where cultural contacts between different parts of Central Asia took place, as well as communications with such large regions, as China, India and the Arabian countries. The stability of Amir Temur’s empire, the prosperity of big cities and their vicinities, as well as the development of irrigated agriculture stimulated the development of craft, strengthening its different varieties which led to the change in the historical topography of the towns. New quarters of craftsmen appeared while the traditional ones continued to grow; new streets were laid and new places of active commerce, trading rows covered with domes sprang up. The craftsmen’s production was in most cases made and sold in the stalls situated around the central market of a town. Utensils necessary for the everyday life, fe- male jewellery, gold embroidery, minerals known all over the world, paper of various sorts, military outfit and ammunition were on sale there. The art and crafts of the 14th–15th centuries is a logical development of the aesthetics of the pre-Mongolian period with its adherence to the ornamental pattern the virtuous 18

The Classical Art of Islam language of decorative allegories. Samarkand was famous for its manufacture of excel- lent items of artistic ceramics, glass, toreutics, ivory items, marble, onyx and wooden ar- tifacts. It was the centre of manufacture of the best sorts of paper, silk, cotton and woolen fabrics that were very popular. Clavijo in his diary writes with admiration about the riches and beauty of the city, the brilliant architectural constructions and their magnificent inte- rior, lists numerous things made of gold and silver, describes clothes and details of the suits of the aristocracy who used in their decoration expensive sorts of silk and jewellery. Out- standing masters and craftsmen brought from different countries no doubt played an impor- tant role in the creation of the imperial style of art in the court of Temur and the Timirids. The richest traditions of the art of Central Asia, and Samarkand in particular, was the fer- tile ground for the fast development of the artistic craft and the fruitful interaction of local and foreign masters. The creation of the centralised empire in Maverannahr and Khurasan resulted in the re- vival of the centres of artistic pottery. The clay from Samarkand and its vicinities was used for the production of ceramic items. Clavijo wrote that ‘the clay there is the best in the world’. The potters produced various types of crockery. Various bowls, big and small dishes, tagora, chiragi were found in the territory of Temur’s citadel in the archaeological layers of the 15th cen- tury. A particular rise in the development of glazed ceramics took place in the late 14th – early 15th centuries. A new type of ceramics, an imitation of imported Chinese porcelain, based on the use of the local silicate faience-like clay kashin, appears in this period. Local mas- ters did not know the technological secrets of the Chinese porcelain; they however achieved a brilliant artistic effect, and such ceramic items became an important object of export to various parts of the continent, including Europe, and were highly appreciated by con- temporaries. Porcelain-like ceramic items were produced in various towns of Central Asia and medieval Azerbaijan: Samarkand, Bukhara, Shahrisabz, Merv, Urgench, Meshed, Ker- man, Herat, Shamkir, Old Ganja, Bajlakan, Dabil and others. In Ulugbek’s time there was a special workshop ‘Chinnikhana’ located in the suburbs of Samarkand. The style known as ‘the Chinese porcelain’ was one of the most popular at the time, and the products of local craftsmen could not be distinguished from the origi- nal samples. In the Timirids’ period the old forms of items gradually die out and new ones take their place; blue colours become very popular—a tendency that has lived to our days; the character and location of ornamental compositions on tableware change. Along with imitative samples characteristic of the early stage, when local masters transferred without almost any changes the motifs and plots borrowed from the Far East to their decor, the items in which the craftsmen’s creative improvisation produces a new ornamental style, gradu- ally spread over the territory. Craftsmen freely place the drawings with images of animals, birds, flowers and mythological dragons on the surface of flat round dishes or low bowls. The spread of figurative drawing was connected with the influence of the Chinese porcelain, but the Far Eastern motifs in the items of Central Asian masters often dissolve in the abun- dance of ornamental patterns. In general, the ceramics of the Timirids’ time was based on the artistic traditions and the lat- est achievements of the largest ceramic centres of the Near and Middle East. However, both in expensive and everyday items these trends were so cardinally reconsidered by masters 19

The Artistic Culture of Central Asia and Azerbaijan in the 9th–15th centuries • Ceramics and adapted to the local, deeply traditional botanical compositions that it could be distin- guished only in most general features. A glazed dish made in the 14th–15th centuries in Sa- markand with an image of a six-pointed star and a meander pattern on the bottom is tradi- tional for the region and is a good example of the Temurid ceramics, in the décor of which we can see a deviation from the features of the Chinese porcelain and a search for the orig- inal elements of a new pattern. The same approach is typical of masters from Bukhara. The centre of a round dish from the 15th century’s Bukhara is decorated by concentric lines of a botanical pattern which bears but a faint resemblance in style to the Chinese prototypes. The ceramics of Maverannahr influenced the development of this artistic genre in Hissar (Tajikistan). Vessels covered with dark blue, grey and blue paints, so typical for the Timirids’ period, were produced there. The ceramic items from Khojend (Tajikistan) were usually made of kashin and were painted with cobalt or black pigment on the white background. The traditions of the new style can be noticed across the whole territory of Central Asia and medieval Azerbaijan although there is no doubt that the ceramic items from different regions discussed in this publication preserve their local features. Therefore the difference between the Temurid and the pre-Mongolian ceramics lies in its colour, ornamentation and processing methods. The picturesque style of the warm hues of the 10th–12th century’s ceramics from Afrasiab and Nishapur is replaced in the Timirids’ period by a more graphic style, delicate in drawing and cold in colour, the style of the porcelain-like ceramics with a white background and blue painting and the blue and dark blue ceramics with black un- der glaze painting. While the general aesthetic canons are adhered to, the artistic style be- comes more flexible and relaxed. In this period ceramists were also engaged in producing decorative architectural terra- cotta, carved and stamped, colourful and glazed tiles and painted majolica, which had sur- prisingly intensive and stable colour, bringing inexpressible originality to the interior decora- tion of the local architectural monuments. The turquoise colours introduced to architecture by the masters of artistic ceramics, became a symbolic expression of the art of the Timirids’ period. High skill was combined with the filigree of patterns in the interiors and facades of numerous religious and secular edifices. Architectural monuments of Central Asia and Az- erbaijan provide a vivid evidence of this magnificence. The creative genius of craftsmen and architects appear in inseparable unity and harmony. Unlike the household ceramics, the architectural ones were not affected by the Chinese artistic traditions. Interweaving bo- tanical, geometric and epigraphic patterns were the leading motifs, while the architectural monuments of the 13th–15th centuries in Azerbaijan often included figurative compositions. Akbar Khakimov 20


KAZAKHSTAN Ceramics has been studied in Kazakhstan for one hundred and fifty years. Among most prominent scholars in the field were P. I. Lerh, V. V. Vereschagin, V. V. Radlov, A. V. Klare and A. Cherkasov, A. N. Bernshtam, E. I. Ageeva, T. N. Senigova, K. A. Akishev, K. M. Bay- pakov, L. B. Erzakovich, T. M. Teplovodskaja, E. A. Smagulov, T. V. Saveleva, O. V. Kuznets- ova (Lerh, 1870; Vereschagin, 1874, p. 1–118; Clare, Tcherkasov, 1904. p. 13–39; МIА, 1950. V. 14. p. 133–141. fig. 82–86; Ageeva, Patsevich, 1958, p. 157–202; Senigova, 1972, p. 34–44, 81–99, 188–196; Akishev, Baypakov, Erzakovich, 1972; Akishev, Baypakov, Erzakovich, 1983, p. 162–166. Fig. 38–82; Akishev, Baypakov, Erzakovich, 1986; Baypakov, Erzakovich, 1991; Samashev, Kuznetsova, 2000, p. 84–100; Kuznetsova, 2002, p. 219–226). The first clay items appeared in the territory of Kazakhstan in the Neolithic Age (around 5000 BC). At this time the transition to agriculture and cattle breeding started and people learnt to mould vessels from clay and to bake them in fire. These vessels were of a parabolic shape with round bottom and a symbolic ornament. During the Bronze Age with the devel- opment of the Andronov culture in Kazakhstan, the same kinds of vessel gradually became more graceful, their shape became more diverse, and the ornament more sophisticated. According to the established tradition, the following three large areas of medieval ur- ban culture are identified in Kazakhstan: Southern Kazakhstan (valleys of the Syr-Darya and the Arys, foothills of the Talas ridge and the slopes of Karatau); Southwestern Sem- irechye (Talas and Chuy valleys, the foothills of the Kirghiz Ala Tau); and Northeastern Sem- irechye (a valley of the river Or, the foothills Zailiy and Dzungarian Ala Tau) (Baypakov, 1986, p. 7–12). It is necessary to add to the above the area of the Western Kazakhstan (the valley of the Ural river) where the cities of the Golden Horde such as Aktobe Shed, Uralsk (Jaik) were discovered and studied. (Afanasev, 1996; Tasmagambetov, Samashev, 2002; Samashev, Kuznetsova, Plahov, 2008; Baypakov, Smagulov, 2002. p. 168–184). The urban culture of Northeastern Semirechye perished by the end of the 13th – ear- ly 14th century, in Southwestern Semirechye and the Western Kazakhstan—by the early 15th century. These chronological reference points also mark the end of the manufacture of ceramics in these regions. In the south of Kazakhstan ceramic production proceeded till the 19th century. The ceramics of Southern Kazakhstan in the 8th–9th centuries, first of all of its larg- est centre of Otrar, has a number of distinct features. It can be classified in the following two types: traditional and innovative. The latter came from Sogd. Researchers noticed that the ceramics of Sogd of that time somehow imitated metal items. Micas added to the body covering of a jug gives it metallic shine. The mugs, similar to silver mugs of Turkic tribes, have ring-shaped handles typical for metal items. The Otrar jugs have a pear-shaped body and the handle with a number of ledges on its ver- tical edge. The mugs have one or two dented handles. The jugs and mugs have an ornament 22

Kazakhstan in the form of diamond-shaped grids, semi-ovals and ovals pressed on the body. Vessels are covered with red, cherry and black slip. They combine the features of the traditional style (red, cherry and black slips, handles with zoomorphic details) with the new trends (the jugs’ pear-shaped body and triangular spouts). Particularly interesting are the finds from Kujryktobe. The jug with extended spout and a neck which gives a vessel similarity to a head of a bird is graceful and beautiful. The ornament decorating the body is produced by means of carving, stamping and sprigs. Evidently, female figures in crown-like headwear with the hands crossed on the chest are related to the cult of farvash—guarding spirits. A ceramic mask and a fragment of a neck of the jug made in the shape of a head of a demon are the attributes of medi- eval actors. In the 10th – the beginning of the 13th century when the urban culture reaches the peak of its development, large potters’ neighbourhoods appear in cities, and the technology of ce- ramic manufacture improves. Unglazed ceramics of that time is represented by pots, jugs, mugs, lids and different kinds of очажные foot with scratched herringbone ornament can still be found. Pots and jugs is decorated sprigными by fillets with notches, body vessels are covered with red- dish or light-beige slip, sometimes with slight burnishing. Most vessels are made on a pot- ter’s wheel. Hand-made ceramics is represented mostly by lids with tops in the form of the stylised figures of rams and horned zoomorphic ledges. The surfaces of the lids were decorated by incised and stamped ornament in the form of the symmetrical incised branches and leaves. Lids with oval or rectangular rim and mushroom-like handle dec- orated with prints in the form of rosette appear later. Lids of this type are covered with slip and decorated with stamped and incised ornament, sprigs in relief. The most frequent ornamental elements of the time were solar signs, brackets, and S-shaped signs which formed the whirl rosettes. Also well spread are bowls with smooth concave walls, with a break at the rim, and a disc- like foot. The tradition of manufacturing mugs and bowls of the ’Sogdian’ type with wavy edge continues. The forms of vessels are standardised. Large jugs (hums) have an egg-shaped body and the unbent rim, rectangular in cross-section. Both large and smaller hums, tagoras and jugs are covered light slip and decorated with drips and paint splashes. A group of wide-neck mugs with the handle connecting rim with shoulder is decorated with incised ornament and prints in the form of crosses, circles and asterisks. There is a considerable number of clay food stands (dastarkhan) decorated with stamped, carved and handbuilt ornaments of botanical, geometrical and zoomorphic character. Another interesting group includes kitchen and table pots covered with incised and stamped ornament. In the 12th – early 13th century we come across an interesting group of rounded or square altars with low sides, stuck to the floor. Their internal surfaces and walls are decorated by stamped rosettes, prints of solar signs, botanical and geometrical ornament. Portable U-shaped and cylindrical fireplaces, which have the shape of basins with straight walls without a bottom, supported by massive ledges, also become popular. 23

The Artistic Culture of Central Asia and Azerbaijan in the 9th–15th centuries • Ceramics A new kind of ceramics appears in the form of vessels decorated with mineral paintings of black and red colours. Ornamental motifs are various—solar signs, stream-like strips on handles of jugs and kumgans, stylised epigraphic patterns. Glazed ceramics. A particular important development was the wide circulation of glazed ware. Glazed ceramics in Central Asia is commonly attributed to the 8th–9th centuries. It spreads from Central Asia to the Southern Kazakhstan in the 9th–10th centuries (Tash- hodzhaev, 1967, p. 9; Vaktursky, 1959, p. 268; Akhrarov, 1965. p. 151–152). This kind of ceram- ics has green potassium glaze with white background and under glaze drawing in the form of the dented rim, the stylised flowers, similar to the Afrasiab ceramics of the 9th–10th centu- ries (Bolshakov, 1954. p. 12.). There is also a group of ceramic items with black background covered with transparent lead glaze. Inscriptions in Arabic are used as an ornament. The glazed ceramics has some parallels to the complexes of ware found in Central Asian cities, most closely resembling the ceramics from Shash, Taraz and Fergana. The similarity of glazed ceramics over extensive territories testifies to close economic and cultural con- tacts and similarities in the tastes of townspeople guided by standards of the leading cul- tural centres. The ceramics is represented by bowls, plates, dishes, mugs, basin-like vessels, jugs, and oil lamps (chirag). The most important collection was gathered during the excavation of Otrar and Kujruktobe. It can be classified into several types based on the colour of slip, glaze and the character of drawings. The most widespread is the ceramics with white slip background covered by transpar- ent lead glaze. For the earlier group of ceramic items of this type, the black, red and brown colours of drawings are particularly typical. The drawings are composed so that the main ornamental strip, usually rather nar- row (about 3 cm), making up a fifth part of the surface of a bowl, is located at the rim. It is covered with Arabic inscriptions in the Kufi and ceramic italics styles, according to O. G. Bolshakova (Belenitsky, Bentovich, Bolshakov, 1973, p. 277). Usually all the sur- face of a bowl is blank, and only in its centre a curl, a circle, a stain or a comma is located. Ceramic items with a spotty drawing, in a combination with engraving were also produced. There is a kind of ceramics with so-called propeller-like ornament; ceramic underpainting in the form of bunches of plants done in green colour dispersing from the centre. The mo- tifs of ‘spread wings’, stylised bunches of plants and readable Arabic inscriptions become widely spread and those with birds, animals and people are. The drawings are made with brown, green and yellow paints. A particular group of ceramic items consists of ware with red background under trans- parent glaze with white and black elements of the ornament, i.e. white dots, medallions filled with inscriptions, and a simple alphabetic ornament. There are ceramic items with black background covered with transparent glaze and white paintings. Drawings in the form of bo- tanical springs, combined with geometrical rosettes. Bowls with Arabic inscriptions. There is a group of the ware covered with dull glaze of green and brown colours. The glazed ceramic items of the 12th – early 13th century was discovered during the excava- tion of Kujruk-tobe, Otrar, Baba-ata, and Chardarinsky Aktobe. These are bowls of differ- ent size, dishes on a disc-like foot, tank-like vessels, jugs, and chirags. 24

Kazakhstan Glazed ceramics. Otrar. 11-12 century. 25

The Artistic Culture of Central Asia and Azerbaijan in the 9th–15th centuries • Ceramics Ornament covers all the surface of a bowl, a dish, or a plate. There is a change in the com- position of the ornament, which divides the vessels into different sectors with cross-shaped strips, and swastika-like lines. More often than earlier, engraving is made under the glaze. For the ceramics of the 12th century with white background it is typical to have the whirl- shaped rosette as the basic motif in the centre of the bottom, painted by dark brown paint and, more rarely, in red and brown. The rosette occupies the centre of the bowl or nearly all its surface. The ceramics covered with dull green and dark brown brilliant splashes is widely spread, as well as ware covered with dark glaze and drawings with dots as a background. The chirags of the 12th century have a faceted body and a long spout. The handle is loop- like or with a ledge with stamped botanical ornament, e.g. palmetto, or trefoil. There are im- ages of animals—in two cases the pictures of saiga (local gazelle) were found on the heels of the chirags. The artistic ceramics of this period meets the increased demand of the developed medi- eval society. The forms of vessels, their proportions and details change, while their deco- rative effect, one of the most important features of Central Asian medieval art, increases. Craftsmen introduce new elements of the ornament, new compositions and colour scales. Ceramics in the 13th – early 15th century. Unglazed ceramics is characterised by a group of vessels made in the traditions of the previous periods, while the clay and the shape of the items become rougher. Such forms as lids decorated with prints of stamps, sprigs, carving, figurative fireplaces gradually disappear. All ware of the period is made on a pot- ter’s wheel. Pot-shaped vessels, large ones with a wide neck and a rim up to 20 cm in diameter with a short narrowing mouth, sometimes with a slight bell, the rim in the form of a straight line or with a small triangular thickening. The pots have a convex top of the body, and, as a rule, two flat loop-like handles with a small thickening in the middle of the external sur- face. Mouths are finished by two tiers of shallow cannelures. In some of the tiers the dents are made by fingers, or contain incised ornaments in the form of a chain of notches, with scratched wavy lines. One more type of pots—pot-like vessels without handles with a high direct mouth 9–11 cm in diameter, with the rim bent outwards in the form of a platform or a triangle. These were decorated by several wavy lines. Tagoras—massive vessels, usually trapezoid in a cross-section with a rim in the form of a platform bent outwards in a direct or an obtuse angle to the surface. On the platform of the rim there is a tier of a wavy incised ornament (sometimes it can be seen on the ex- ternal surface of the body). Either the internal or both surfaces of the vessels are very often covered with red slip with radial strips of burnishing inside. Hums and humchi continue the traditions of the past periods. Noteworthy is the mouth fragment of a hum 28 cm in diameter. The edge of the rim in the form of a wide platform with deep notches on the edge is bent out at a right angle. In the middle part of the mouth there is a massive ledge with two lines of notches located at an angle to each other. Jugs have narrow cylindrical mouths with a triangular thickening on the edge. The wide flat cranked handles are slightly tilted and attached to the rim or the central part of the body. Some jugs are painted in black and red colours. The elements of the drawing are curls, S-shaped 26

Kazakhstan and stream-like lines, the stylised letters of the Arabic alphabet. The fragment with a drawing made in black paint particularly stands out. It was a part of a jug with spherical body, ending with a high cylindrical mouth with a straight linear edge. The massive cranked handle, flat in cross-section, is attached to the top part of the mouth and the shoulders of the body. In this part of a jug there is a tier made of diagonally scratched straight lines, and above and below the tier there is an ornament in the form of alternating helicoid rosettes and combinations of five vertical wavy lines. In the middle part of the handle there is a thick part with a crest on which drop-like dots underlined with three parallel lines are placed. Covers and lids were widely used in everyday life and consequently are among the most widely spread kinds of ceramics. Covers of the period are usually spherical in shape, flat, with the diameter reaching 25–35 cm, thickness 3–5 cm. Their surface is covered with the slip of light red or pink colour. An ornament is carved or incised, stamped, or scored and has some geometrical or solar forms. The stamped prints of circles are framed with points, or con- centric and wavy lines. Handles look like a column with blown-up body, the flat or rounded lid decorated with printed patterns. Usually it has the shape of a whirl-like or hexagonal, sometimes, octagonal rosette, with goffered beading. Buckets are regarded as a rare species of ceramic forms—wide neck vessels with the arched lamellar handles. Only top parts of buckets have remained. Moneyboxes are made in the shape of rounded boxes with cuts for coins. Stamped ceramics, judging by the number of items and moulds (kalyb), are of local manu- facture. Stamped ornaments decorated flasks, jugs, usually the top part of the body. For this purpose potters used clay kalybs, convex cup-like moulds. There is an incised ornament on the internal surface of the kalybs. When such kalyb is applied to greenware, the convex stamped pattern is printed on the upper part of the body. Among the finds was a whole kalyb 20 cm in diameter, with the diameter of the aper- ture reaching 5 cm. Its internal surface is divided into three parts by two fur-like strips. In the centre of each sector there is a four-petal rosette, stamped probably with a metal matrix, placed in a rectangular frame. The remaining surface is filled small six-seven-pet- al rosettes located in concentric rows. The fragments of stamps, of which there are about two dozen, provide evidence that the background made of small rosettes is characteris- tic for the majority of kalybs. Large rosettes, inscriptions, images of animals are drawn on this background. The jug has been found in filling of the potter’s furnace with a spout, decorated with the images of a horse and a cheetah in a circle. The mouth is ornamented by two wavy lines and connected with body with the lamellar handle, 10 cm wide at the bot- tom. All in all six figures are represented. The horse has a bridle and a saddle. The front can- tle of the saddle is straight, while the back one is longer, and bent outwards. A bird, probably, a falcon sits on the front cantle. The bird’s leg is tangled with a rope. The cheetah is pic- tured running. It has a lean body, long feet, a small cat’s head and the tail twirled in a ring. The body it is covered with circles with a point in the middle. The background, on which the animals are pictured, is covered with convex rosettes, trefoil knobs and beading. Be- low there is a narrow tier with the images of birds divided by rosettes, and further lower— a wavy line (Akishev, Baypakov, Erzakovich, 1986, p. 160–165). Glazed ceramics. As a result of archaeological research of the Otrar rabad, an extensive area once occupied by potters was discovered. It contained twelve workshops where eighteen 27

The Artistic Culture of Central Asia and Azerbaijan in the 9th–15th centuries • Ceramics Glazed ceramics. Otrar. 13-14 century. potter’s furnaces (kilns) functioned simultaneously. Potters’ tools were found in the work- shops near the pits where the rejected items were dumped to. Frequently the finds included prepared materials and the unfinished items ready for baking. The workshops specialised in the manufacture of various items: glazed and unglazed pieces, large forms and small tableware. The quarter is dated of the 13th–14th centuries. In the first half of the 14th cen- tury the ceramics produced there typically had transparent glaze and drawings in green and brown stains, as well as ceramic items with the dull green glaze. A characteristic sign of this type of ceramics is an ornament with a botanical composition drawn under the glaze. Slips are mostly red, yellow or pink. The glaze is transparent and tinted in yellow, green, pink- ish, blue and dark blue colours. Drawings are botanical, geometrical or alphabetic. A combi- nation of slip coverings and glaze enabled us to classify the ceramics in some groups. First of all, it is pottery with yellow glaze and drawings made under it on the light creamy slip. Drawings are green, brown and red. They are made in the form of radial beams, triangular grids, rhombuses, dots and crosshatching. The glaze only touches on the rims of the walls from outside. A drawing in the form of arches on light slip is under the glaze. Ceramics with the green glaze. The ornament, if any, is executed in the technique of un- der-glaze engraving. Its elements are curls, or spirals forming botanical-geometrical com- positions. 28

Kazakhstan Pottery with polychrome glaze on both sides. One side is covered with green, another— with yellow glaze. Items with transparent glaze applied onto red-brown slip. Under-glaze drawings are mono- chromic, made with a green or yellow paint. The elements of the drawings, square medallions, geometrical vignettes are monochromic, also made with the help of a green or yellow paint. There are also vessels with green glaze over the red slip. The ceramics with colourless or pinkish glaze over red slipа is widely spread. The items covered with the glaze of marsh colour, without underpainting. Ceramics with the black dull glaze; with dark blue glaze and black and brown drawings a paint; with transparent glaze and drawings in dark blue and manganese. Some of the above groups have analogies in the neighbouring regions. The ceramics with green and yellow glaze and under-glaze engraving, with colourless glaze an marble- like and spotty drawings, with dark blue and blue glaze with a black drawing was manufac- tured in Central Asian cities (Sajko, 1969, p. 22–73). However, such variety of coloured glaze in combination with red slip has so far never been found anywhere else but in the Southern Kazakhstan. One of the characteristic features of ceramics of the Southern Kazakhstan is the absence of items from kashin. As we know, kashin pottery was meant to replace expensive import- ed porcelain items (Pugachenkova, 1950, p. 121). It becomes widely spread all over Central Asia in the 17th century and later. The form of the bottom of piala and kese is quite remarkable. If the Central Asian items mostly have the ring foot, for the Southern Kazakhstan the ring foot with a ledge in the cen- tre is more typical. As it has been already mentioned, geometrical ornaments or geometri- cal shapes in a combination with botanical patterns, are mostly widely spread. Zoomorphic drawings are rare. The ceramics of the late 14th – early 15th century with cobalt drawings is somewhat similar to the Temurid ceramics from Central Asia. Vessels become covered with transpar- ent glaze on the light background, drawings are made in cobalt. Both surfaces of an item are covered with drawings, but the main drawing is located on the inner surface of bowls, dishes and plates. Vertical compositions, and the drawings based on the circle, oval or spiral, the vortex-like rosette, flowers, plants are widely spread. The outer surface of the rim is cov- ered by drawings in the shape of a grid, zigzag or plant. Bowls, dishes, small pots, jugs and vases are covered with glaze and drawings. Botanical motifs are usually used in drawings. Ceramic items covered with yellow glaze and drawings in brown, green and red colours become widely spread as well as ceramics with yellow glaze over red slip and ceramics with blue or dark blue glaze and drawings in black. Technological studies of the ceramics of this period have shown that lead glaze and ‘old’ pigments were used, but there are no examples of pure lead and flint based kinds of glaze. There are lead and lime based glaze varieties, more difficult in terms of technology and prep- aration, but also providing glaze covering of a higher quality. Paints were based on the ox- ides of copper, chrome, nickel and iron (Teplovodsky, 1983, p. 200). Speaking about innovations in ceramic manufacture, it is necessary to point out at the con- tinuity between the ceramics of the 13th – early 15th century and the ceramics of the pre- 29

The Artistic Culture of Central Asia and Azerbaijan in the 9th–15th centuries • Ceramics Mongol period. It pertains, first of all, to the use of such traditional elements as the whirl rosette, spirals and geometrical drawings. It is also necessary to note the use of red slip which was widely spread in the Southern Kazakhstan from the early Middle Age. As always, the image of a traditional Syr-Darya ram is widely represented, mostly as glazed and un- glazed lid covers in the form of the figures of a ram executed in a realistic manner. Usually the figures are covered brown and green slip with yellow drawings. The second traditional image used in ceramic production is a bird. These are found in figures used in the orna- mentation of handles of covers and lids, and, as a rule are carried out in a realistic manner with the help of cobalt-based paints. Ceramics of the late 15th – 16th centuries. Unglazed ceramics is represented by pot- like vessels, hums, humchas, tagoras, jugs, bowls, plates, cauldrons and lids. Most numerous are the pot-like vessels divided in two groups: wide neck vessels with a slightly convex body, small shoulders, and a low cylindrical mouth. They have various edges: straight, rounded, slightly bent outwards; triangular in cross-section, in the form of a narrow platform bent outwards. The ornament is incised and scratched in straight lines and wavy bands. The second group is represented by pot-like vessels with a spheri- cal body. They are subdivided in the following two types: ones with a low neck and a fillet on the edge and the ones with a straight unarticulated neck and small loop-like handles under the edge. All vessels are made on a potter’s wheel. Most items are covered with slip: light, light brown, occasionally—completely black or with stains and splashes of dark red and black slip. Jugs are of the standard form and oval body and a cylindrical mouth. The rim is straight or with a small thickening and is bent outwards. Flat loop-like handles are attached under the rim and at the top part of the body. There are also large vessels with rounded shoulders and a narrow cylindrical mouth. The flat handle is fixed under the rim and above the middle of the body. Most jugs are covered with slip: light with a greenish shade, light grey, or more rarely, light brown or with stains and splashes of dark red and black slip. As analyses have shown, the slips are prepared from light bake clay with high potassium content, to which ferriferous clay was added to give items a brown shade. The thickness of the slips is 0.1 mm; good coordination with the foot. Unglazed bowls are rarely found in the layers of the 15th century. They are thick-walled, placed on the circular foot, and are either covered with light brown slip or have no slip at all. Plates are also rare. The collection contains some fragments with the bent side and point- ed rim edge. Hums and humchas are also poorly represented in the Otrar ceramics of the 15th century. Only side walls with vertical or oblique crosshatching remained from hums that have oval body, a low straight or slightly protruding mouth, rounded rim or triangular in cross-sec- tion. The external surface is often covered by notches. Tagores have a trapezoid body with wide edge in the form of a platform bent outwards, ornamented with a tier of wavy lines. As a rule, both surfaces are covered with red slip, sometimes with burnishing. Cauldrons are represented by an insignificant number of fragments, thick-walled sides with sprigным tier under the rim on a low mouth and a number of rimes bent inside. 30

Kazakhstan The glazed ceramics is made of high quality baked clay which has a colour range from grey to red. Alkaline glaze becomes mostly widespread. Ornament drawings are made of oxides of cobalt, manganese, sodium, potassium, zinc and alumina. While copper oxide is widely used, the oxides of chrome, nickel and antimony disappear altogether (Teplovod- sky, 1983, p. 200–205). There are colourless kinds of glaze (which sometimes have rather dirty shades) and blue ones (various colour intensity), while cream or slightly greenish types of glaze are more rare. Items with colourless glaze were decorated by a bichromatic and monochromic drawings. Vessels with bichrome drawings are mostly represented by high bowls and pialas on the cir- cular foot. Dishes are thick-walled, on the circular base, walls are straightened at the bottom, and the rim is bent outwards. Glaze is also used for pot-like vessels and large thick-walled items of the tagora type. The paints used in drawings contain manganese (various shades, sometimes purple black) combined with blue; manganese and turquoise; cobalt and blue or turquoise; cobalt and purple black, dark green and bluish colours. Most drawings are made in manganese or cobalt, the contour is drawn by turquoise and blue paints. The same colours are used in straight or wavy lines which do not have any independent value. Usually both surfaces are painted, but the main attention was given only to one of the two. In a composition the ornament per se is concentrated in two or three areas. Ornament is lo- cated on the base of small bowls and on the rim where it forms a rather narrow decorated tier. The central ‘static’ composition prevails in ornaments. It is based on a circle, an oval or a spiral with the diverging bent lines or curls which fully fill the bottom space. Some- times from the central circle there are four radial axes and the space between them is oc- cupied by the stylised flowers and leaves. There is also another kind of background composition, known as ‘vertical’, where the or- nament has a ‘top’ and a ‘bottom’ (Pugachenkova, 1950, p. 100). The bottom surface (some- times with addition of a hexagon with the bent sides) contains a bush or a flower of type of lily, framed by small curls on a ring. Patterns on the external surface are grouped in concentric tiers, sometimes from top to bot- tom, in various combinations. These are alternating stylised branches with leaves, surround- ed by freely scattered curls; separate branches of a herringbone ornament which are placed on the same level as a festooned cartouche; a chain of ovals decorated with irregular geo- metrical figures from above and from below; small arches; large oval fruits with small bo- tanical ornamental curls. These compositions are sometimes limited to the tiers of geomet- rical figures or laces. Pottery with monochromic drawings made in cobalt, manganese, blue paint has very similar shapes and ornamentation. Here the same two kinds of ornament, ‘static’ and ‘ver- tical’ prevail. The outer part of bowls is often decorated by tiers and crosshatching which forms rhomboid cells. Both surfaces of tagoras are usually glazed with transparent glaze on white background. The whole inner surface is painted. The bottom and walls are accentuated by ornament. The tiers of drawings are separated by strips. A tagora with the drawing of fish is particu- larly interesting. 31

The Artistic Culture of Central Asia and Azerbaijan in the 9th–15th centuries • Ceramics Ceramics. Taraz. 9-10 century. Pottery with blue, turquoise, cream and dark green glaze is re presented by bowls, pialas dishes, tagoras and pot-like vessels. Blue glaze can also be seen on vessels without drawings, but more often it is used in a combination with drawings made with black paint and man- ganese. There are items covered with slightly coloured blue or greenish glaze with draw- ings in cobalt or manganese. The motifs of drawings under the painted glaze are similar to the described above. The glazed ceramics has parallels with Central Asian ceramics of the 15th – early 16th century. The ceramics of Southwest Semirechie of the 9th–10th centuries is represented by finds from Taraz, Kulan (Lugovoe) and Navaket (Krasnaya Rechka). Unglazed ceramics. The share of hand-made modelled ware which at this time is rep- resented mostly by cauldrons, food stands (dastarkhan) and lids decreases. Cauldrons had a spherical body, a slightly thickened triangular in cross-section rim, horizontal loop- like handles, made either in the form of plaits or sprigs in the form of ledges. Lids usually have a spherical form and a knob on the top in the form of a horned ledge, zoomorphic figures, which are richly ornamented by means of carving, stamps, sprigов, 32

Unglazed ceramics Jar. 9th–10th centuries. Otrar oasis. Kazakhstan. 33

The Artistic Culture of Central Asia and Azerbaijan in the 9th–15th centuries • Ceramics Mask. 9th–10th centuries. Otrar oasis. Kazakhstan. 34

Unglazed ceramics Jar with printed ornament. A fragment. 13th–early 14th century. Otrar oasis. Kazakhstan. 35

The Artistic Culture of Central Asia and Azerbaijan in the 9th–15th centuries • Ceramics Lantern. 13th–early 14th century. Otrar oasis. Kazakhstan. 36

Unglazed ceramics Fragment of ceramic lid. 9th–10th century. South-Western Semirechye. Kazakhstan. 37

The Artistic Culture of Central Asia and Azerbaijan in the 9th–15th centuries • Ceramics Painted jars. 10th–13th centuries. Uzgen. Eastern Ferghana. Kyrgyzstan. 38

Unglazed ceramics Lid. 11th–12th century. South-Western Semirechye. Kazakhstan. 39

The Artistic Culture of Central Asia and Azerbaijan in the 9th–15th centuries • Ceramics Red burnished jar. 10th–11th century. Ak-Beshim site. Chuy valley. Kyrgyzstan. 40

Unglazed ceramics Paikend. Uzbekistan. 41

The Artistic Culture of Central Asia and Azerbaijan in the 9th–15th centuries • Ceramics Mug with fish. 11th century. Afrasiab. Uzbekistan. 42

Unglazed ceramics Flask with carved ornament. 10th century. Paikend. Uzbekistan. 43

The Artistic Culture of Central Asia and Azerbaijan in the 9th–15th centuries • Ceramics Jar with a narrow neck. 10th–11th century. Afrasiab. Uzbekistan. 44

Unglazed ceramics Jar. 10th–11th century. Uzbekistan. 45

The Artistic Culture of Central Asia and Azerbaijan in the 9th–15th centuries • Ceramics Spheroconical vessel. Old Ganja. Azerbaijan. 46

Unglazed ceramics Yellow clay jar with printed ornament. 12th century. Shamakhy. Azerbaijan. 47

The Artistic Culture of Central Asia and Azerbaijan in the 9th–15th centuries • Ceramics Jar with zoomorphic elements. 9th century. Torpaggala. Azerbaijan. 48

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