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before 1542; 4th quarter 16th c. (mount)




This casket with lid is made up of carved ivory plaques and mounted in silver, with silver feet, lock and handle. The latter are a European addition from the 2nd half of 16th century. The reliefs depict scenes from the life of Krishna. The casket is mentioned in the Ambras inventory of 1596, which proves once again how popular such exotic objects were in the Kunst- und Wunderkammern of the time. Apart from the European setting, this mention of the casket in the Ambras inventory is important in determining the otherwise difficult dating of the ivory work. An even more precious casket of gold with precious stones preserved in the treasury of the Munich residence is already mentioned in a Munich inventory of 1598.

Location: Kunsthistorisches Museum Wien, Kunstkammer Wien Raum XXV

Object data

Object Name

Casket; Ivory Carving


Kotte (Sri Lanka); Indo-Portuguese, Southern German


before 1542; 4th quarter 16th c. (mount)


Ivory, silver


H. 14,9 cm, B. 25 cm, T. 16 cm

Image rights

Kunsthistorisches Museum Wien, Kunstkammer

Inv. No.

Kunstkammer, 4743

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