London, South Kensington
29 April 2005
A ENGRAVED COPPER KASHKUL, PROBABLY CENTRAL ASIA, 17TH/18TH CENTURY
In the form of a nut, with brass fixing attachments, the exterior finely carved with animals amongst scrolling foliage beneath a border of nasta'liq, base with small cartouche containing signature -- 12½in. (31.7cm.) long.
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The verses around the sides appear to be a mystic poem concerning takbir (magnifying God by repeating allahu akbar). The cartouche on the underside is engraved:
"be-dast-e ostad 'abd al-jamil" (By the Master 'Abd al-Jamil). Both the use of the term be-dast-e and the name 'Abd al-Jamil are extremely unusual to find on an object from Iran; central Asia seems much more probable as an origin.
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