Salaams all... Well that was an interesting interlude. Shall we bring the guns to bare on the main target ?... The Kastane
.. I have tried in vain to raise the Cromwellian Museum but the curator was last seen carrying a huge bundle of swords in the direction of the local souk..."Any Old Iron" !! was his call...
I consider decorative Kastane style here and bring another item of beautiful hand carved Ivory as a sample of excellent artesan production..
Here is an Ivory Sri Lankan box... hand carved in identical fashion to the swirls of the Makara tail often incorporated into Kastana hilts...
The one with the Iconic Zoomorphic style is described as ~
Such cabinets were produced in Ceylon (present day Sri Lanka) off the western coast of India on commission from Portuguese traders for the European market by the mid 16th century.
The shape and function are European, but the subject and style of the elaborate carving, including perforation of the ivory plaques that make it up, are characteristic of Ceylon.
The plaques of ivory are carved in low relief, backed by sheets of tortoise shell and with silver fittings (corner pieces, rivets, key plates, original key and handles).
On the front, the upper drawer is decorated with confronted lions spewing scrolls enclosed in borders of quatrefoils and beading; the lower two drawers have key plates and scrolling, with identical borders.
On the sides are square central panels with winged leonine fantastic creatures with reptilian scaled tails (serapendiyas) enclosed in borders surrouned by scrolling and framed with borders.
On the top are two confronted leonine creatures, similar to those on the sides, enclosed in beaded ovals and scrollwork, further enclosed in a border with outer scrolling and border.
On the back is an oblong field with fragment of leonine creature enclosed in beaded frame with elaborate scrolling and border.
The underside is composed of plain ivory.
There is also a small section of border in the upper drawer.
So as not to be out done by the Cromwellian Museum I also sourced a carving set with Lionesque Sri Lankan Icons for hilts...Maybe the hilts shown earlier were previously swords on 'Armour Cromwellian' after all !
Ibrahiim al Balooshi.