Inventory no.: 1337

African Islamic Silver Bowl


Large, Heavy Engraved Silver Bowl

Omdurman, Sudan

dated 1934

diameter: 26.5cm, height: 7cm, weight: 921g

This large and impressive basin or bowl is of beaten high-grade silver. It is surprisingly heavy in the hand – it weighs almost a kilogram. It has been hammered with a slight well which marks out a foot, then steep sides rise to an everted lip.

The interior base is engraved with a central calligraphic roundel around which there is a plain border, then an engraved border. Another engraved border is around the interior rim, and another to the exterior ring. The calligraphic roundel includes a date in Arabic – ‘1934’ – but using the Western calendar.

The Arabic inscription mentions that the bowl was made in Omdurman (in standard Arabic: Umm Durman –

م درمانأ

) – the largest city in Sudan. It lies on the western banks of the Nile and is the commercial and a cultural capital of Sudan and Khartoum State.

Overall, this is a bowl or basin with great presence and in excellent condition.


Al-Jadir, S., Arab & Islamic Silver, Stacey International, 1981.


UK/US private collection

Inventory no.: 1337