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  • Place of origin:

    India (made)

  • Date:

    c. 1850 (made)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Agates, bloodstone & jasper, cut & polished using abrasives

  • Museum number:

    08268:1/(IS) to 08268:14/(IS)

  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

These obelisks were made in India in the 19th century, with most of the fashioning process involving a combination of hand-working and the use of abrasive-charged discs that would have been turned on a bow-driven lathe. Decorative objects such as this would have been produced in large quantities, most probably for export to the European market.

Physical description

A collection of obelisks with square to rectangular bases and cross-sections, fashioned in a range of sizes and colours. The faces have been polished to a reasonable degree but the bases have been left only lightly polished.

Place of Origin

India (made)


c. 1850 (made)

Materials and Techniques

Agates, bloodstone & jasper, cut & polished using abrasives


Height: 69.35 mm 08268:1/(IS), Length: 37.3 mm 08268:1/(IS), Width: 27.55 mm 08268:1/(IS), Height: 72.55 mm 08268:2/(IS), Length: 33.7 mm 08268:2/(IS), Width: 32.7 mm 08268:2/(IS), Height: 82.9 mm 08268:3/(IS), Length: 36.2 to 39.0 mm 08268:3/(IS), Width: 37.3 to 38.7 mm 08268:3/(IS), Height: 89.6 mm 08268:4/(IS), Length: 39.2 to 42.0 mm 08268:4/(IS), Width: 32.7 to 33.8 mm 08268:4/(IS), Height: 88.4 mm 08268:5/(IS), Length: 36.5 to 37.3 mm 08268:5/(IS), Width: 34.8 mm 08268:5/(IS), Height: 88.25 mm 08268:6/(IS), Length: 39.8 to 40.5 mm 08268:6/(IS), Width: 37.5 to 38.0 mm 08268:6/(IS), Height: 81.6 mm 08268:7/(IS), Length: 39.9 mm 08268:7/(IS), Width: 31.4 mm 08268:7/(IS), Height: 84.35 mm 08268:8/(IS), Length: 37.4 to 38.1 mm 08268:8/(IS), Width: 34.5 to 35.6 mm 08268:8/(IS), Height: 79.4 mm 08268:9/(IS), Length: 34.0 to 34.9 mm 08268:9/(IS), Width: 30.7 to 32.0 mm 08268:9/(IS), Height: 54.4 mm 08268:10/(IS), Length: 28.1 to 28.6 mm 08268:10/(IS), Width: 27.0 to 27.6 mm 08268:10/(IS), Height: 54.3 mm 08268:11/(IS), Length: 29.5 mm 08268:11/(IS), Width: 28.2 to 29.9 mm 08268:11/(IS), Height: 62.8 mm 08268:12/(IS), Length: 25.1 to 25.5 mm 08268:12/(IS), Width: 17.0 mm 08268:12/(IS), Height: 64.5 mm 08268:13/(IS), Length: 26.7 mm 08268:13/(IS), Width: 27.8 to 28.6 mm 08268:13/(IS), Height: 61.6 mm 08268:14/(IS), Length: 20.90 to 21.15 mm 08268:14/(IS), Width: 21.0 to 21.3 mm 08268:14/(IS)

Object history note

These obelisks were made in India in the 19th century and were formerly in The India Museum in London. They were then transferred to the South Kensington Museum (later renamed The Victoria & Albert Museum) in 1879.

Descriptive line

Obelisks, square or rectangular base and cross section, fashioned from a variety of agates and jaspers, India, 19th century


Agate; Bloodstone; Fossilised marine organisms; Jasper


Gemstones; Hardstone; Ornament


South & South East Asia Collection

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