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    Sale 7571

    Art of the Islamic and Indian Worlds

    8 April 2008, London, King Street

  • Lot 172

    AN OTTOMAN INLAID JEWELLER'S CHEST

    TURKEY, 17TH CENTURY

    Price Realised  

    AN OTTOMAN INLAID JEWELLER'S CHEST
    TURKEY, 17TH CENTURY
    Of rectangular form with wooden sides with iron fittings and handles, the front opens outwards and the top up to reveal a lattice of mother-of-pearl and tortoiseshell inlaid drawers with geometric design, each with at least one small handle, some with secret compartments behind, one with a space designed for scales and weights, minor areas of restoration
    15½ x 13 3/8 x 6½in. (39.5 x 33.7 x 16.6cm.)


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    This is a most unusual piece of furniture. When closed, the exterior is very spartan: plain dark wood with only a small hint of the quality of the interior given by the elegant trefoil terminals of the iron fittings. It must have been deliberately made to impress when it is opened. The face of each drawer has a different inlaid design. the shallow wide upper drawer contains a compartment clearly made to contain a set of scales. Some of the drawers also have set within them a secret drawer which can only be accessed from the back of the main drawer. All these point to it having been made to be used as a travelling jeweller's work chest: lockable, portable (the side handles are obviously made for straps), and then very impressive when opened.

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