Inventory number
O00001
Author
Anonymous
Title
Onyx Salt Cellar with a Gold Mermaid
Chronology
1501-1550
Technique
Carved, glazed, embossed
Material
Piedras duras, preciosas y semipreciosas
Dimensions
17,5 cm x 12,5 cm
School
French
Theme
Mythology
On display
Yes
Provenance
Royal Collection

This possible saltcellar follows models dating from the first half of the sixteenth century and is considered the most important piece in the group of works known as The Dauphin's Treasure.

It represents a mermaid with a headdress of enameled feathers. Her torso and arms are decorated with rubies and diamonds and her lower limbs are enameled in blue. She holds a sculpted agate vessel and rests on a pedestal of the same material, with enameled parts.

Its form has been related to the works of the Italian, Benvenuto Cellini (1500-1570), especially his famous saltcellar at the Kunsthistorisches Museum of Vienna.

This work was part of the inheritance received by King Felipe V (1683-1746) upon the death of his father, the Grand Dauphin, in 1712.

 

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