- Place of origin:
- Materials and Techniques:
- Museum number:
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This handle of a hunting knife is made by an unknown artist in Germany in ca. 1840-1850.
The ivory handle is carved with a grotesque horned head below which is a medallion with an ram skull in relief. It is distantly reminiscent of the work of Johann Michael Maucher (1645-after 1690), and at the same time recalls Japanese ivories. This mixture of sources, as well as the coarse carving, suggests it is in fact a nineteenth-century fake, probably made in Germany. It was formerly thought to be from about
Two other ivory handles for hunting swords are in the V&A, one carved with groups of figures terminating in the head of a man wearing a helmet (2236-1855), the other formed of groups of superimposed animals (9039-1863).
Carved ivory handle of a hunting knife with a grotesque horned head below which is a medallion with a ram's skull in relief.
Place of Origin
Materials and Techniques
Height: 12.7 cm
Object history note
Acquired from the Museo Collegio Romano, Rome in 1859.
Historical context note
Two other ivory handles for hunting swords are in the V&A, one carved with groups of figures terminating in the head of a man wearing a helmet (2236-1855), the other formed of groups of superimposed animals (9039-1863)
Handle of a hunting knife, ivory, carved with a grotesque horned head, probably Germany, ca. 1840-1850
Bibliographic References (Citation, Note/Abstract, NAL no)
Inventory of Art Objects Acquired in the Year 1859. In: Inventory of the Objects in the Art Division of the Museum at South Kensington, Arranged According to the Dates of their Acquisition. Vol I. London: Printed by George E. Eyre and William Spottiswoode for H.M.S.O., 1868, p. 32
Longhurst, Margaret H. Catalogue of Carvings in Ivory. Part II. London: Victoria and Albert Museum, 1929, p. 94
Trusted, Marjorie, Baroque & Later Ivories, Victoria & Albert Museum, London, 2013
Trusted, Marjorie, Baroque & Later Ivories, Victoria & Albert Museum, London, 2013, p. 443, cat. no. 481
Grotesque; Ram; Head
Sculpture; Sport; Tools & Equipment