Inventory no.: 479



Mother-of-pearl & Lacquer Pedestal Tray (



Thailand (Siam), circa 1910

height: 16cm, diameter: 24.5cm

This twelve cornered


is inlaid with mother-of-pearl in various floral and animal designs. Grasshoppers amid peonies, stands of bamboo, birds and crabs are among the motifs employed. It reflects the syncreatic nature of Thai culture and certainly Bangkok society whereby Thai customs show Chinese influence and indeed many Bangkok families are of mixed ethnic Thai and Chinese ancestry, including that of the royal family.

The rim of the

talum is delightfully inlaid with a scrolling flower design. Each piece of mother-of-pearl has been masterfully cut and inlaid, and all the pieces have a wonderful iridescence.

Artifacts inlaid with mother-of-pearl; typically were reserved for use in monasteries and in royal and aristocratic households.

Talums often were used to hold offerings of fruit and flowers and were placed on alters before images of the Buddha.

Inventory no.: 479