2727

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Sri Lankan Silver ‘Moonstone’ Dish

Kandy, Sri Lanka
circa 1920

diameter: 20.8cm, weight: 262g

Available - Ask about this item

Provenance

UK art market

This silver dish is repoussed and chased to a design based on the semi-circular ‘moon stones’, here doubled, that are found at the threshold of a stone entrance or stairway to many Sri Lankan temples and former palaces. An outer rim shows elephants and other animals. The inner rims show a repeated hamsa motif and various swirling vegetal motifs, all against a very finely tooled background.

The central roundel is unembellished but surrounded by a double lotus petal border.

The reverse of rim is stamped with what seems to be a mark in the form of a money and a separate ‘KAA’ mark which is a colonial silver control mark used in Ceylon.

The last image shows a carved moonstone at the start of the steps of the Anuradhapura palace, photographed around 1900.

References

Coomaraswamy, A.K., Mediaeval Sinhalese Art, Pantheon Books, 1956 reprint of the 1908 edition.

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