The Egyptian inkstand comprises a kneeling Isis priestess guarding ink-jars concealed in a 'cippus' altar formed as a truncated column on poetic palm-wrapped plinth. Related ormolu inkstand patterns were invented in the early 19th century by Parisian bronziers such as Choiselat-Gallien and Galle (C. Plante and R. Garnier, Designs for Gilt-bronze Objects, London, 2002, pp. 65 and 69). Similar kneeling priestesses featured on an ormolu inkstand purchased for Carlton House, London in 1810 George, Prince of Wales, later George IV. (H.Clifford Smith, Buckingham Palace, London, 1931, p. 203 and pl. 236).
An identical pattern for the base, but later fitted with a timepiece is illustrated in S. Medlam, The Bettine, Lady Abingdon Collection, London, 1996, p. 69, M.9.