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Plaquette from a casket decorated with animals

REF RI007374 EAN 3336728516316

 Plaquette from a casket decorated with animals

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Plaquette from a casket decorated with animals

This little casket has an animal décor: two eagles flank a pair of rabbits they seem to be eyeing hungrily. Two lions seem about to pounce on a pair of gazelles. Although eagles and lions are usually power symbols, they may here be merely decorative without any particular symbolic meaning.

In the 11th century, after the fall of the caliphate of Cordoba, several ivory workshops took refuge in Cuenca, which was then part of the kingdom of Toledo. They carried on the tradition of ivory carving begun under the caliphs, but instead of selling their work to the Umayyade family, they turned to rich, anonymous customers.

This casket is intact although it no longer has its original ironwork.

Reproduction in hand patinated resin

L. 14,5 cm; W. 8,5 cm; H. 4 cm
0,200 kg (0,44 lbs)
Material of the original
Spain (Cuenca ?) - Mid 11th century
Opening of new areas of the Department of Islamic Art - Louvre Museum - September 2012
Paris - Musée du Louvre
Art movements
Islamic art, 11th Century