Inventory no.: 1616

Brunei Borneo Lime Container


Cast Brass Lime Container

Brunei or Borneo

18th century

diameter: 10cm, height: 7cm

This very pleasing covered cast bronze or brass pot and cover might be mistaken for being of North Indian origin but it is in fact from the island or Borneo, which today is shared between Brunei; Sarawak and Sabah of Malaysia; and West and East Kalimantan of Indonesia.

The container most probably comes from the Brunei/Sarawak part of Borneo and was used as a lime container for the preparation of betel.

The slightly domed cover has been finely cast in lotus petal form, and has a bud-like finial. The cover fits tightly over the base. The base itself is slightly waisted and engraved on the lower half with a repeated fish-scale motif.

The item has a fine green-black patina suggestive of considerable age. An eighteenth century dating does not seem unreasonable.


Chin, L.,

Cultural Heritage of Sarawak, Sarawak Museum, 1980.


UK art market

Inventory no.: 1616