One of the best known artistic products of Turkey's Ottoman dynasty (1300–1922) is the richly colored and elaborately decorated ceramic style called Iznik ware, made in the 1500s. When the Ottomans conquered Damascus, Cairo, and parts of Iran in the early 1500s, they brought large numbers of Chinese porcelains back to the Topkapi Palace in Istanbul. Ottoman potters did not have the materials or techniques to produce true porcelain, but made use of Chinese motifs and shapes, such as wave-like patterns on borders and wide, sometimes scalloped, rims on dinner plates or platters.
Iznik ware is often recognizable by its rich colors (frequently including, as here, an intense tomato red) and lively designs featuring tulips, carnations, lilies, and other flowers. Another frequent motif is the "fish scale cartouche" (oval or diamond shape) seen in the middle of this plate.