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Casket - Casket with foliate roundels

Casket with foliate roundels

  • Object:

    Casket

  • Place of origin:

    Byzantine Empire (made)

  • Date:

    late 10th century (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Unknown

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Carved ivory in high relief with pierced borders

  • Museum number:

    5471-1859

  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

The nearest parallel in ivory to that unusual casket is a panel, probably from a casket, with a leaf and scroll ornament in rather low relief, in the Louvre.
This Byzantine casket in ivory is made in the late 10th century and is of a unique design.
Very similar leaf scrolls appear on Byzantine metalwork and enamels.

Physical description

Carved with panels of foliage scrolls in high relief surrounded by borders of raised pierced bands.

Place of Origin

Byzantine Empire (made)

Date

late 10th century (made)

Artist/maker

Unknown

Materials and Techniques

Carved ivory in high relief with pierced borders

Dimensions

Height: 6.7 cm, Width: 18.1 cm, Depth: 12.6 cm

Object history note

The nearest parallel in ivory to that unusual casket is a panel, probably from a casket, with a leaf and scroll ornament in rather low relief, in the Louvre.
Very similar leaf scrolls appear on Byzantine metalwork and enamels. But a slight difference in the technique makes it possible that the casket is perhaps a contemporary imitation carved under Mohammedan influence rather than a strictly Byzantine work. The carving, if not actually Byzantine, appears to have been done, possibly in Southern Italy, under Byzantine influence (Graeven, Bonner Jahrb├╝cher, Heft 108-9 (1902), Pl. IX, p. 252)

Descriptive line

Casket, carved ivory in high relief, Byzantine, late 10th century.

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. 31
Longhurst, Margaret H. Catalogue of Carvings in Ivory. Part I. London: Victoria and Albert Museum, 1927, p. 47
Williamson, Paul. Medieval Ivory Carvings. Early Christian to Romanesque. London, V&A Publishing, Victoria and Albert Museum, 2010, pp. 68-73, cat.no. 13

Materials

Ivory

Techniques

High relief; Carving; High relief

Subjects depicted

Friezes (ornamental bands); Foliage

Categories

Containers; Sculpture

Collection

Sculpture Collection

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