Or are you looking for Search the Archives?

Please complete the form to email this item.

Inkstand - A Bull

A Bull

  • Object:


  • Place of origin:

    Italy (made)

  • Date:

    ca. 1550-1600 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:


  • Materials and Techniques:


  • Credit Line:

    Salting Bequest

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

The great majority of bronzes produced during the Italian Renaissance were made for use, so-called 'functional bronzes', which, however beautiful in their own right, nevertheless had some practical use beyond simple ornament. This is the case of this bronze inkstand group, which was intended for the writing table, together with other utensils and vessels. The furnishing of the study was indeed one of the most important tasks of bronze casting.

Physical description

Inkstand in bronze in the form of a bull. The bull is reclining on an oblong base with four claw feet; his back is cut out and fastened as a lid with a hinge near his tail. Dark patina.

Place of Origin

Italy (made)


ca. 1550-1600 (made)



Materials and Techniques



Width: 10 cm, Depth: 4.5 cm, Height: 8 cm

Object history note

From the Salting bequest.

Descriptive line

Inkstand in the form of a sacred/resting Bull, bronze, Italian, ca. 1550-1600

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

'Salting Bequest (A. 70 to A. 1029-1910) / Murray Bequest (A. 1030 to A. 1096-1910)'. In: List of Works of Art Acquired by the Victoria and Albert Museum (Department of Architecture and Sculpture). London: Printed under the Authority of his Majesty's Stationery Office, by Eyre and Spottiswoode, Limited, East Harding Street, EC, p. 9



Subjects depicted



Household objects; Sculpture; Metalwork; Accessories


Sculpture Collection

Large image request

Please confirm you are using these images within the following terms and conditions, by acknowledging each of the following key points:

Please let us know how you intend to use the images you will be downloading.