Large, Pierced Silver Round Betel Box & Cover
height: 8.7cm, diameter: 21.3cm, weight: 920g
This large and impressive round box and cover is decorated on all sides and on top with undulating dragons and sealife including fish, crabs, seabirds, clams and frogs. The sides and covers are pieced all over adding to the intricacy of the design.
The base is plain. There are no maker’s marks.
The box would have been intended to serve as a betel box to hold the ingredients of the betel quid.
It is clearly the product of ethnic Chinese craftsmen operating in Thailand, most probably in Bangkok, and this item would have been produced for a local client. The motifs would be particularly appealing to many of Bangkok’s Chinese. Overwhelmingly of the Teochiu dialect, many were involved in seafood and maritime rice trade around Southeast Asia.
The box and cover are in excellent condition.
Naengnoi Punjabhan, Silverware in Thailand, Rerngrom Publishing, 1991.Provenance:
UK art market
Inventory no.: 3037