Standing-cup and cover, formed from ostrich egg shell mounted in silver-gilt. Two-tier foot with rounded rim decorated with mesh pattern and convex band of oval bosses linked by strapwork. Upper foot chased in relief with bands of differing strapwork enclosing fruit. Stem in form of tree trunk entwined with grapevine, containing lizard, squirrel, and enamelled tortoise. Calyx with rounded rim and mesh pattern identical to foot-rim. Above, band of raised ornament comprising dots, dashes and openwork cresting of interlacing scrolls and strapwork. Four vertical strap mounts surround the egg. At bottom of each, in high relief, a Mannerist mask within strapwork, and below, a pendentive scroll.  Each strap-mount has vertical band of dots and dashes in relief, bordered by pierced scrolls and strapwork, interrupted by large quatre-foil, set with rectangular diamond within cartouche. Ostrich finial is screwed into a modern tube soldered on inside cover to reverse of a German Renaissance silver medal. Obverse of medal shows portrait bust, in profile to left, of bearded man with neck ruff. Reverse depicts seated female with sheep, the background a walled town with gateway, a shield above bearing a single device (a foliate branch). Her hand supports her head, her elbow rests on an octagonal (?) hour-glass with a candle and candlestick above. Encircling inscription on both sides of medal. Marked.

Museum number

WB.111

Description

Full: Front

Standing-cup and cover, formed from ostrich egg shell mounted in silver-gilt. Two-tier foot with rounded rim decorated with mesh pattern and convex band of oval bosses linked by strapwork. Upper foot chased in relief with bands of differing strapwork enclosing fruit. Stem in form of tree trunk entwined with grapevine, containing lizard, squirrel, and enamelled tortoise. Calyx with rounded rim and mesh pattern identical to foot-rim. Above, band of raised ornament comprising dots, dashes and openwork cresting of interlacing scrolls and strapwork. Four vertical strap mounts surround the egg. At bottom of each, in high relief, a Mannerist mask within strapwork, and below, a pendentive scroll. Each strap-mount has vertical band of dots and dashes in relief, bordered by pierced scrolls and strapwork, interrupted by large quatre-foil, set with rectangular diamond within cartouche. Ostrich finial is screwed into a modern tube soldered on inside cover to reverse of a German Renaissance silver medal. Obverse of medal shows portrait bust, in profile to left, of bearded man with neck ruff. Reverse depicts seated female with sheep, the background a walled town with gateway, a shield above bearing a single device (a foliate branch). Her hand supports her head, her elbow rests on an octagonal (?) hour-glass with a candle and candlestick above. Encircling inscription on both sides of medal. Marked.

© The Trustees of the British Museum

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  • Standing-cup and cover, formed from ostrich egg shell mounted in silver-gilt. Two-tier foot with rounded rim decorated with mesh pattern and convex band of oval bosses linked by strapwork. Upper foot chased in relief with bands of differing strapwork enclosing fruit. Stem in form of tree trunk entwined with grapevine, containing lizard, squirrel, and enamelled tortoise. Calyx with rounded rim and mesh pattern identical to foot-rim. Above, band of raised ornament comprising dots, dashes and openwork cresting of interlacing scrolls and strapwork. Four vertical strap mounts surround the egg. At bottom of each, in high relief, a Mannerist mask within strapwork, and below, a pendentive scroll.  Each strap-mount has vertical band of dots and dashes in relief, bordered by pierced scrolls and strapwork, interrupted by large quatre-foil, set with rectangular diamond within cartouche. Ostrich finial is screwed into a modern tube soldered on inside cover to reverse of a German Renaissance silver medal. Obverse of medal shows portrait bust, in profile to left, of bearded man with neck ruff. Reverse depicts seated female with sheep, the background a walled town with gateway, a shield above bearing a single device (a foliate branch). Her hand supports her head, her elbow rests on an octagonal (?) hour-glass with a candle and candlestick above. Encircling inscription on both sides of medal. Marked.

    Full: Front

  • The bowl and cover of this standing-cup are formed of the shell of an ostrich egg and are mounted in silver-gilt to form a tall, decorative, covered cup. The circular, two-tier foot has a rounded rim which is decorated with a mesh pattern created by a continuous series of engraved dashes in parallel lines. Above this foot-rim, a narrow, undecorated concave zone leads to a broad convex band of small oval bosses linked by a complex strap-work design. The foot then rises through a concave, plain, burnished silver-gilt zone to the upper tier, the rounded surfaces of which are richly chased in relief with two bands of differing strapwork enclosing bunches of fruit. From the flat, circular top of the foot protrudes a threaded screw on to which the lower part of the stem is screwed. The stem represents an old tree-trunk, spiralling upwards and dividing into two but overgrown by a vine that has become entwined around both parts. On the vine are several bunches of grapes in addition to the large freestanding vine leaves and tendrils, whilst on the upper parts of the tree itself there are a lizard and a squirrel. The belly of the lizard is completely undercut and its head is depicted stretching upwards with its mouth open to bite at a bunch of grapes; the squirrel is shown seated upright eating an acorn in its raised paws. Further down the tree-trunk is the applied figure of an enamelled tortoise. At the top of the stem, the screw-thread is partly encased in a later extension to the tree-trunk (see condition). At the centre of the base of the bowl is a projecting threaded screw which is partly hidden by the loose-fitting detachable ring of openwork, spiralling leaf ornament (believed to be a later addition – see condition). The silver-gilt calyx, which supports the shell of the ostrich egg that forms the bowl, has an outer, rounded rim which is decorated with a mesh pattern that is identical to that on the foot-rim. Above, there is a narrow band of repetitive raised ornament consisting of two dots and a long dash and an openwork cresting of interlacing scrolls and strapwork. The cresting is hidden at four evenly spaced points by the elaborate openwork of the four vertical silver-gilt strap-mounts, which link the calyx to the bowl rim-mount and so hold the ostrich egg firmly in place. At the lower end of each strap-mount where it meets the cresting there is, in very high relief, a grotesque human Mannerist mask confined within strapwork and, below, a short pendentive scroll terminating in a bead-shaped 'drop'. The decoration of each of the four strap-mounts is the same; it comprises a narrow, central, vertical band on the repetitive motif - two dots and a dash - in relief, which is bordered by pierced scrolls and strapwork and, in the centre, is interrupted by a large strapwork quatre-foil, set with a rectangular 'pyramidal diamond' of silver-gilt. At the top of each of the vertical strap-mounts there is a large, oval boss within a large, pierced strapwork cartouche; it interrupts the inverted openwork cresting that forms the lower edge of the rim-mount of the bowl. The latter echoes, on a larger scale, the design of the mount at the base of the bowl, but in the centre of each of the four sections (between the vertical strap-mounts) is an oval boss within an elaborate cartouche that hides a section of the horizontal band of that repetitive motif- two dots and a dash. Above this decorated zone, there rises the short, plain and slightly everted rim of the bowl. The cover has a flange that fits neatly inside the rim of the bowl, and a plain rim that hardly projects beyond the rim of the bowl. Within the cover's plain rim, a tooled tubular mouldin

    Full: Front

  • Standing cup and cover; body and cover formed of ostrich egg-shell mounted in silver, chased and gilded; body held by four vertical bands chased and pierced with formal scrollwork; upper border of similar design; stem represents spiral tree-trunk entwined by vine with lizard, squirrel and enamelled tortoise; base chased with framework containing trophies of fruit; cover bands similar to body, and surmounted by figure of ostrich holding horse-shoe; inside is silver-gilt medal with bearded bust to left of Hieronimus Loter on obverse; reverse: shepherd seated and leaning on hour-glass, sheep at his knee, castle in background; inscribed.

    Full: Front

  • The bowl and cover of this standing-cup are formed of the shell of an ostrich egg and are mounted in silver-gilt to form a tall, decorative, covered cup. The circular, two-tier foot has a rounded rim which is decorated with a mesh pattern created by a con

    Full: Front

  • The bowl and cover of this standing-cup are formed of the shell of an ostrich egg and are mounted in silver-gilt to form a tall, decorative, covered cup. The circular, two-tier foot has a rounded rim which is decorated with a mesh pattern created by a con

    Group of Objects

  • The bowl and cover of this standing-cup are formed of the shell of an ostrich egg and are mounted in silver-gilt to form a tall, decorative, covered cup. The circular, two-tier foot has a rounded rim which is decorated with a mesh pattern created by a con

    Front:Middle

  • The bowl and cover of this standing-cup are formed of the shell of an ostrich egg and are mounted in silver-gilt to form a tall, decorative, covered cup. The circular, two-tier foot has a rounded rim which is decorated with a mesh pattern created by a con

    Front:Bottom

  • The bowl and cover of this standing-cup are formed of the shell of an ostrich egg and are mounted in silver-gilt to form a tall, decorative, covered cup. The circular, two-tier foot has a rounded rim which is decorated with a mesh pattern created by a con

    Detail: Other

  • The bowl and cover of this standing-cup are formed of the shell of an ostrich egg and are mounted in silver-gilt to form a tall, decorative, covered cup. The circular, two-tier foot has a rounded rim which is decorated with a mesh pattern created by a con

    Detail: Lid

  • The bowl and cover of this standing-cup are formed of the shell of an ostrich egg and are mounted in silver-gilt to form a tall, decorative, covered cup. The circular, two-tier foot has a rounded rim which is decorated with a mesh pattern created by a con

    Detail: Lid