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Salt cellar

Salt cellar

  • Place of origin:

    Germany (possibly; after an Italian sample, made)
    Italy (possibly, made)

  • Date:

    ca. 1560 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:


  • Materials and Techniques:

    Gilt brass

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

This is a salt cellar made in Germany or Italy, about 1560. The cellar is made in gilt brass and represents a bearded man, probably Neptune, kneeling on a Dolphin and upholding a large pecten shell, which was probably moulded from nature, on his shoulders. The group is supported on a circular moulded base or plinth.

Physical description

Gilt bronze salt cellar formed by a bearded man on a dolphin supporting a shell. The dolphin emerges out of the sea. Made out of three parts, the figure of the man, the base with the dolphin and the shell.

Place of Origin

Germany (possibly; after an Italian sample, made)
Italy (possibly, made)


ca. 1560 (made)



Materials and Techniques

Gilt brass


Height: 7.75 cm

Object history note

Bought from the Soulages Collection in 1865.

Descriptive line

Salt cellar, gilt bronze, a bearded man on a dolphin supporting a shell, German or Italian, probably late 16th century

Bibliographic References (Citation, Note/Abstract, NAL no)

Robinson, John Charles. Catalogue of the Soulages Collection. London: Chapman & Hall, 1856, p. 124
Fortnum, C. Drury. E. A Descriptive Catalogue of the Bronzes of European Origin in the South Kensington Museum. London: George E. Eyre and William Spottiswoode, 1876, p.183
Planiscig, Leo. Piccoli Bronzi del Rinascimento. Milano: Fratelli Treves, 1930, p. 132
Radcliffe, Anthony. European Bronze Statuettes. London: Connoisseur, Joseph, 1966, pp. 20, 85
Inventory of Art Objects acquired in the Year 1865. Inventory of the Objects in the Art Division of the Museum at South Kensington, arranged According to the Dates of their Acquisition. Vol. 1. London : Printed by George E. Eyre and William Spottiswoode for H.M.S.O., 1868, p. 53

Production Note

Germany or Italy


Gilt brass

Subjects depicted

Dolphin; Man; Shell


Images Online; Sculpture; Household objects


Sculpture Collection

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