Dutch (Delft)
about 1730–35
Artist Unknown, 16th century

Object Place: Europe, The Netherlands


17.8 x 11 cm (7 x 4 5/16 in.)

Accession Number


Medium or Technique

Tin-glazed faience (earthenware) with polychrome decoration

On View

Charles C. Cunningham Gallery (Gallery 247)





The parrot stands upright, astride an open teardrop-shaped stand, which is attached to the tip of the bird’s tail and both legs. The exterior of the stand has an irregular surface suggesting rockwork, with an undulating top edge at the front and a sloped edge behind the legs, echoing the parrot’s tail. The stand and bird seem to have been molded as one piece and separated by cutting the clay, leaving an opening between the bird’s tail and the upper edge of the stand. Decorating the base are circular blossoms in pale yellow and orange on a mottled light blue ground with a bubbly blue wash and a fine network of lines suggesting rock work. The bird’s head is turned slightly to the left, and the lower edges of the wings protrude slightly from the body. The parrot has a dark blue bill, with a small circular hole on each side, indicating the upper and lower mandibles, and two holes for the nostrils at the top of the bill. Its head is blue-green, with a yellow crown. The blue eyes are framed by a white circle within a yellow one. The pale blue neck has a white ring with red feathers. The upper body has red feathers edged in yellow and dark blue, and the lower body, blue feathers edged in orange, all against a white ground. The tops of both wings are green-blue, with fine orange lines beneath and bolder orange and yellow stripes over the rest of the wing. The tail feathers are striped in the same way, and the legs and talons are striped in light blue. The body is hollow, and the interior glazed.


May 1959, purchased in New by Rita and Frits Markus, New York and Chatham, MA;
1983, gift of Rita and Frits Markus to the MFA. (Accession Date: January 18, 1984)

Credit Line

Gift of Rita and Frits Markus