Venetian Occupation, 1205-1645

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During the first period of intense hostilities (1205-1300), pottery production fell or remained stationary.

During the second period (1300-1460), ending with the fall of Constantinople to the Turks, local production diversified into a wide variety of forms and decoration. Small biscuit ware vessels began to be decorated with applied clay colouring (slip), shading from red to dark brown depending on the firing. The decoration was particularly simple, consisting of parallel lines, crosshatching etc. Large biscuit ware vessels such as storage jars, basins, beehives, troughs etc. began to come in various shapes and sizes decorated with incised or stamped designs.

During this period, Cretan glazed ware appeared and flourished. This included plates, bowls, jugs etc., in soft, delicate shades of green and yellow, or with brown spots on a white background. Domestic ware was decorated with geometric patterns, spirals, flower petals etc. This decoration was applied by delicate incision of the vessel, over the slip and colour, which darkened after firing. The decoration of Cretan glazed ware differs from that found in the Peloponnese, Cyprus and Asia Minor.

The third period (1460-1645) was distinguished by a major resurgence in pottery production during the first phase to 1550.

The large forms, mainly storage jars, were often decorated using cylinder seals, which were rolled around the vessel to produce decorative bands. The variety of glazed ware increased and the vessels were distributed widely through the countryside, with a corresponding steady improvement of quality. During the second phase (1550-1645) pottery, and especially glazed ware, began to decline. Incised decoration was simplified or even vanished entirely, while coloured decoration became softer and spread across the whole surface. This decline is probably due to the widespread insecurity of the Venetian Dominions following the fall of Cyprus to the Turks (1570) and the Ottoman advance.

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