Name of Object:



Tangiers, Morocco

Holding Museum:

Kasbah Museum

About Kasbah Museum, Tangiers.

Current Owner:

Batha Museum, Fez

Date of Object:

Hegira 8th century / AD 14th century

Museum Inventory Number:

90.B. 3

Material(s) / Technique(s):

Sculpted and vanished cedarwood.


Height 31.5 cm, length 244.5 cm, depth 5 cm

Period / Dynasty:





The upper part of this long panel is decorated with a traditional Marinid ribbon of eight-petal rosettes between two fillets. The main section sits below this band and is divided into two decorative areas.
The lower area consists of plant motifs in low relief: noduled foliage and smooth double palms.
The upper area consists of alternating high-relief arcatures in two different sizes. They consist of two superposed arches separated by a groove: the upper arch is undulated and the lower arch consists of double-palm lobes and is rendered in cavetto.
The large arcatures are crowned with fleurons that cut into the rosette band. They contain an inscription in twisted pseudo-kufic characters with floral upstrokes and bear a mirror image of the word 'yumn' (prosperity), similar to the motifs used in Marinid architectural decoration.
The smaller ones are stamped with a ribbed six-lobe palmette and crowned with plant decoration surrounded by two bound lobes and flanked by adventitious floral upstrokes that extend beyond the sides of the large arcatures.
The movement of the floral motifs, which is harmoniously adapted to the shape of the epigraphic decoration, and the spacing of the spandrels of the arches, as well as their large and rigorous rendering, make this well-made Marinid piece particularly interesting.

View Short Description

The decorative elements of this panel (rosette frame, arches, pseudo-epigraphic inscriptions, palmette and floral motifs) along with their layout and execution are reminiscent of the decorated friezes found at the top of gallery walls in Fez's Marinid madrasas.

How date and origin were established:

From comparative analysis. The decorative elements of this panel, rosette frame, arches, pseudo-epigraphic inscription, palmettes and floral motifs, as well as their layout and execution are reminiscent of the ornamentation found on friezes on top of the walls in the galleries of Marinid madrasas in Fez, in particular the Buinaniya.

How Object was obtained:


How provenance was established:

Salvaged in Fez.

Selected bibliography:

Cambazard-Amahan, C., Le décor sur bois dans l'architecture de Fès, Paris, 1989.
Marçais, G., L'architecture musulmane d'Occident, Paris, 1954.
Terrasse, Ch., Médersas du Maroc, Paris, 1927.
Terrasse, H. and Hainaut, J., Les arts décoratifs au Maroc, Paris, 1925.

Citation of this web page:

Naima El Khatib-Boujibar "Frieze" in Discover Islamic Art, Museum With No Frontiers, 2024.;ISL;ma;Mus01_F;39;en

Prepared by: Naima El Khatib-BoujibarNaima El Khatib-Boujibar

Archéologue et historienne de l'art, titulaire d'une licence en lettres (française), N. Elkhatib-Boujibar a également étudié l'archéologie et l'histoire de l'art à l'Institut d'art et d'archéologie de Paris, l'art islamique et la muséologie à l'École du Louvre (Paris), et suivi des cours à l'Institut d'ethnographie de l'Université de Neuchâtel (Suisse). Elle a occupé plusieurs postes de responsabilité, parmi lesquels directrice des Musées et de l'Archéologie, inspectrice générale des Musées et de l'Archéologie, déléguée régionale du ministère de la Culture.
Elle a dirigé un chantier de fouille durant 20 ans et enseigné à l'Institut national marocain des sciences de l'archéologie et du patrimoine (INSAP). Elle a organisé différentes expositions sur le patrimoine marocain, au Maroc comme à l'étranger, et animé des cycles de conférence, dont celui sur l'art islamique à la “Villa des Arts” à Casablanca.
N. El Khatib-Boujibar a publié différents articles sur le patrimoine archéologique, artistique et architectural marocain, mais aussi sur d'autres sites islamiques et sur les arts mobiliers. Elle a également participé à la rédaction du catalogue Musée Sans Frontières Le Maroc andalou, à la rencontre d'un art de vivre.

Copyedited by: Margot Cortez
Translation by: Laurence Nunny
Translation copyedited by: Monica Allen

MWNF Working Number: MO 59


 Artistic Introduction

 Timeline for this item

Islamic Dynasties / Period

Marinids and Wattasids

On display in


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