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  • Place of origin:

    Italy (made)

  • Date:

    late 16th century (made)

  • Artist/Maker:


  • Materials and Techniques:


  • Credit Line:

    Given by Dr W.L. Hildburgh

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

The transformation of ewers and basins from objects of use into pure showpieces occurred earlier in Italy than in the rest of Europe. It coincided with the triumph of Mannerism - a highly sophisticated mutation of the Renaissance style, which first appeared in Northern Italy in the early 16th century. Italian ewers of the period, such as this one, display the love of sinuous and elegantly contorted forms that characterised the Mannerist style. The ovate body, trumpet foot, narrow neck and high up curving handle were probably influenced by the first Mannerist ewers. This type is always richly decorated.

This ewer is made of copper. Unlike brass, copper is sufficiently malleable to be easily embossed, in the same way as silver. Because of this in the past copper could compete with silver, to some extent.

Physical description

Egg-shaped body embossed with vine-scrolls and arabesques and a coat of arms (partly per fess, in base bendy, in chief a demi-griffin); spool-shaped neck, curved spout and plain, spreading base.

Place of Origin

Italy (made)


late 16th century (made)



Materials and Techniques



Height: 9.875 in, Width: 6.625 in

Descriptive line

Copper ewer embossed with vine-scrolls and arabesques and with a curved spout and plain, spreading base, Italian, late 16th century



Subjects depicted

Arabesques; Coats of arms; Vine scrolls




Metalwork Collection

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