The use of elegant fish-scale pattern which covers the ground of this jug is first found decorating a vessel in the form of a fish in the Benaki Museum in Athens which dates to the 1520s (inv.no.10; Nurhan Atasoy and Julian Raby, Iznik, the Pottery of Ottoman Turkey, London, 1989, p.106, no.451, pl.124). The scale pattern was probably inspired by early 16th century Deruta majolica although its use can be seen in Islamic art on a 15th century twin dragon headed candlestick from Khorasan in the David Collection (Kjeld von Folsach, Islamic Art, Copenhagen, 1990, p.207, no.346). In the late 1570s and 80s it became popular to enliven the background of vessels with fish-scale motif, as seen here. On our jug, the fish-scale is used with another popular motif, cintamani roundels. In Ottoman Turkey that motif appears mainly on textiles but occasionally on Iznik pottery and represents power, force and courage. Cintamani roundels were sometimes seen grouped with pairs of wavy lines as can be seen in a similar jug formerly in the Lagonikos Collection, Alexandria (J. Carswell, Iznik Pottery, London, p.83, fig.62). The three circles however appear more often on their own as on this fine example. The combination of fish-scale and cintamani is found on a jug in the Gulbenkian Collection (inv.no.795; Maria Querios Ribeeiro, Iznik Pottery, Lisbon, 1996, p.215, no.70).