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basin

  • Object type

  • Museum number

    1851,0104.1

  • Description

    Large straight sided basin of raised brass with gold, silver and black inlays decorated with the name, titles and blazon of the Mamluk Sultan al-Nasir Muhammad

  • Culture/period

  • Date

    • 1320-1341 (circa)
  • Production place

  • Materials

  • Technique

  • Dimensions

    • Height: 22.7 centimetres
    • Diameter: 54 centimetres (rim)
  • Inscriptions

      • Inscription Type

        inscription
      • Inscription Script

        Thuluth
      • Inscription Position

        exterior, in small roundels
      • Inscription Language

        Arabic
      • Inscription Content

        عذلمولانا السلطعز
      • Inscription Translation

        Glory to our master the Sultan
      • Inscription Comment

        Small medallions containing the epigraphic blazon of the sultan ('Glory to our master the Sultan') are at the centre of the floral roundels which punctuate the inscriptions and are repeated in the narrow leafy borders on the exterior of the basin.
      • Inscription Type

        inscription
      • Inscription Script

        small thuluth
      • Inscription Position

        interior and exterior
      • Inscription Language

        Arabic
      • Inscription Content

        عذلمولانا السلطان الملك الناصر العالم العامل العازى المجاهد المرابط ناصر الدنيا و الدين محمد ابن قلاون عذه بصري
      • Inscription Translation

        Glory to our master the Sultan al-Malik al-Nasir the wise, the efficient, the warrior, the champion of the faith, the defender Nasir al-Dunya wal-Din Muhammad ibn Qala'un, may his victory be glorious
  • Curator's comments

    Large basins like this were among the most prestigious of the inlaid brass vessels produced by Mamluk metalworkers. They were used primarily for washing: the swimming fish circling the base inside is particularly appropriate decoration. Contemporary historians also describe them being used to collect money or gifts at weddings and other festivals. The chinoiserie style of the floral design in the large roundels demonstrates the influence of textiles and other objects imported into the Mamluk Empire from Mongol Iran and even China itself.

    More 

  • Bibliography

    • Ward & La Niece (Arab metalwork catalogue forthcoming) bibliographic details
    • Phillips 1996 7.56 bibliographic details
    • Blair & Bloom 1994 fig.129 bibliographic details
    • Ward 1993 fig.88 bibliographic details
    • Phillips 1996 p.582 bibliographic details
    • Barrett 1949a pl.28 bibliographic details
    • Ward 1999 pp.119-20, fig.9 bibliographic details
  • Location

    On display: G34/dc21

  • Exhibition history

    Exhibited: GUGGENHEIM MUSEUM, NY USA; AFRICA THE ART OF A CONTINENT; 04 Jun 1996

  • Subjects

  • Associated names

  • Acquisition name

  • Acquisition date

    1851

  • Department

    Middle East

  • Registration number

    1851,0104.1

COMPASS Title: Brass basin inlaid with silver and gold;Gas chromatography-mass spectrometry: a brass basin inlaid with silver and gold

Unknown

COMPASS Title: Brass basin inlaid with silver and gold;Gas chromatography-mass spectrometry: a brass basin inlaid with silver and gold

Image description

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Object reference number: RRM9652

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