Coser(y) ua vio laru

This albarello has horizontal and vertical bands of blue, green and yellow vines and leaves. The center of the jar features a profile of a bearded soldier wearing a helmet. To the left of the soldier is a small band marked, Marce. Below the portrait is a scroll marked Coserua: vio laru in blue text. Pharmaceutical historian George Urdang attributes this albarello to the Italian town once known as Castel Durante, before its name was changed to Urbina in 1635.
An albarello is a type of jar made from tin-glazed earthenware known as Majolica. This type of jar was used in apothecary shops from the time of the Middle Ages. Majolica pottery received its name from the Italian town of Majorca, where this style of earthenware was developed. The tin glaze of majolica resulted in an opaque whiteness that mimics porcelain. The jar would then be painted with vivid colors.
Currently not on view
Object Name
jar, albarello
date made
16th century
Physical Description
ceramic (overall material)
overall: 10 5/8 in x 5 1/4 in; 26.9875 cm x 13.335 cm
ID Number
catalog number
accession number
collector/donor number
SAP 474
catalog number
Health & Medicine
European Apothecary
See more items in
Medicine and Science: Medicine
European Apothecary
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center
Credit Line
Bristol-Myers Squibb Company
Related Publication
Urdang, George and Ferdinand William Nitardy. The Squibb Ancient Pharmacy: A Catalogue of the Collection
Additional Media

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