A rock crystal ewer, Italian, Miseroni workshop, circa 1600.

The body of the ewer is cracked. The later mount on the front covers a large area of engraving, so the bowl may already have been cracked there and this was to conceal it. The goldsmith’s work is of superior quality, and must have been expensive. It includes the only known cameo carved on a precious stone of Queen Elizabeth I.

1690 Devonshire Schedule: “A Christall Ewer Garnisht with Diamonds and Rubies one of the Rubies being Queen Elizabeth’s head”.

 Mounted with enamelled gold in the 17th Century, possibly in England, and set with rubies, spinels, a garnet and diamonds, the helmet-shaped bowl engraved with leafy scrolls, fruit and swags, and with a handle of angular section; the mount to the handle, front of the bowl and foot, pierced and enriched with white, blue and black enamel and set with stones.

Overall height 18cm, width 8cm, depth 17.5cm.


Related collections