Ottoman Balkans Art, A Rare Ottoman Parcel-Gilt Repousse Silver Bowl, Balkans, 17th-18th Century.

Identification Number: 128



The silver bowl, of shallow rounded form with slightly raised boss at centre, presents a surface worked with extremely fine repoussé silversmithing, with a central medallion displaying a lion couchant surrounded by birds of prey and a dragon at its base.

The cavetto, following the Islamic iconographic tradition, presents beasts chasing each other around the rim, mostly birds attacking rabbits, hounds and lions. Both the cavetto and the central medallion scenes take place in a landscape filled with scrolling floral vines. The rim and the border of the medallion are adorned with a fine dotted border.

The wine cup or bowl is made of solid silver and the central roundel still maintains its original gilding.

Condition: Excellent (some loss to gilding).

Dimensions: 13 cm diam.
3.5 cm hight.

For further related readings and historical literature please see the discussion in our previous lot No. 127.
Condition: Excellent


-For an older example of this type of bowls please see (Christies, Art of the Islamic and Indian Worlds, 6 October 2011, London, lot No. 308) presents arrangements around the rim, with birds and lions containing their tail between their hind legs, comparable to our fine example.

-Turkophilia Revealed, Ottoman Art In Private Collections, Directed by Frederic Hitzel, Please see Silverware by Nicholas Show, an important collection of various Balkan bowls, pages 21-33.

Other useful References:

Please see the fine dotted border of the central medallion see:
-Christies, Art of the Islamic and Indian Worlds, 7 April 2011, London, Lot No. 307.

For similar bowls of earlier date:

-The Metropolitan Museum of New York, Drinking Bowl (Hanap), Accession No. 47.101.42.

-The Walters Art Museum, 18th Century Silver Bowl, Accession number 57.1083.

For similar repoussé silverwork:

Christie’s South Kensington London, Arts & Textiles of the Islamic and Indian Worlds, 11 April 2014, Lot No. 373.

-Silver Bowls from the late Middle Ages in Serbia by Mila Gajic, Belgrade, 2010, Fig.86

-Sotheby’s, Arts of the Islamic World London, 24 April 2012, Lot 165.

-Christie’s South Kensington London, Interiors-Masters & Makers, 25 June 2013, Lot 485.

Further references:

-Masterpieces of Serbian Goldsmiths work from 13th-18th Century, The Victoria And Albert Museum, London 1981, lot Nos. 62-68, pages 40-42.

-Marian Wenzel, ‘Early Ottoman Silver and Iznik Pottery Design’ in Apollo, September 1989, pp.159-65. Victoria and Albert Museum, Masterpieces of Serbian goldsmiths’ work, 13th-18th century, pp. 21-41.

-Ottoman Silver Marks, by Garo Kürkman, Istanbul 1996, Mathusalem Pub, 1996, pages 122-129 & 132.

-Helen C. Evans, Byzantium: Faith and Power (1261-1557), Metropolitan Museum of Art (New York, N.Y.), pp. 120 -124.