British Museum

British Museum

Casket; ebony; numerous mouldings, pierced bands and cartouches in relief, silver partly gilt; eight panels round sides, four oblong representing the Seasons alternating with four ovals for the Elements; front: Spring between Water and Fire, symbolised by Neptune and Jupiter with thunderbolt; back: Summer between Air and Earth, represented by two female figures; cover: recumbent female figure holding mirror with snake round handle, little boy seated on skull at her feet, right hand held medal of Henri IV and Marie de Medici, now lost; drawer in lower part; inner side of lid fixed with oblong silver panel with scroll border showing combat between two men and a lion, bears etc: this is shown separately as a plaquette in a frame, its original position inside the lid is indicated by holes. This plaquette bears maker's marks and hallmarks.Key; document in French inside. Openwork.

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  • Title: casket
  • Date Created: 1590/1632
  • Physical Dimensions: Height: 23.00cm; Length: 29.40cm; Depth: 18.70cm; Weight: 2561.00g; Length: 28.00cm (cover); Width: 14.30cm (cover); Depth: 2.00cm (cover); Weight: 264.00g (cover)
  • External Link: British Museum collection online
  • Technique: chased; cast; gilded; low relief; stamped; pointill
  • Subject: myth/legend; classical deity; allegory/personification; reptile; death; elements; zodiac
  • Registration number: WB.218
  • Production place: Made in Augsburg
  • Producer: Made by Wallbaum, Matth
  • Material: ebony; silver
  • Copyright: Photo: © Trustees of the British Museum
  • Acquisition: Bequeathed by Rothschild, Ferdinand Anselm. Previous owner/ex-collection P. Previous owner/ex-collection
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