Dish; hammered sheet brass and finished on a lathe, engraved and inlaid with gold and silver; circular with a raised and lobed omphalos; the base is stepped before curving up into the cavetto and then out to a flat rim; the underside is plain and undecorated. The front is engraved and then inlaid with pieces of silver and gold sheet and black inlay to enhance the contrast. The omphalos bears a European coat of arms (three bull heads on a plain ground) on a separate plaque of silver. This is soldered over the original shield, of which only the outline is visible. Around the shield are flying birds against a scrolling design. The sides of the omphalos are decorated with alternating triangles and the spaces between the lobes are each filled with a pair of birds. The base is decorated with four panels separated by roundels. Two of the panels contain confronted phoenixes either side of a palmette. The other two panels contain scrolling lotus and other elaborate blossoms either side of another large palmette. The four roundels contain pairs of animals in combat, an eagle on the back of a duck or goose, a lion on the back of a deer, an eagle on the back of a duck, and a lion on the back of a bull. The cavetto is decorated with a series of quatrefoils formed from interlaced ribbons, of silver containing, alternately, a pair of confronted birds and a five-petalled rosette. The flat rim has eight panels divided by small ten-petalled whirling rosettes. Two panels of racing animals (hare, deer, feline, sphinx, griffin, bovine) alternate with two panels of flying birds on a scroll design.

An00022898 001 l


Made Of
brass, silver, gold
Type of Thing
Veneto-Saracenic Style
sphinx, lotus, lotus blossom, bird, heraldry, mammal, phoenix
engraved, soldered


Found In
In Gallery


Acquired In
Mamluk dynasty

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