Inventory no.: 3537

Thai Silver Betel Box


Chased, Hinged Silver Betel Box


19th century

length: 10.8cm, width: 7cm, height: 2.3cm, weight: 150g

This attractive small box is of solid silver and has been finely chased on all sides and on the hinged cover with humming birds amid flowering shrub branches. It was probably intended to hold elements of the betel quid. The designs show possible Persian influence. This is not surprising as Persian traders made their homes in Bangkok in the 19th century and several Thai words today are actually loan words from Persian.

The base is stamped with the mark 寶昌 (‘Bao Chang’) which is likely to be the maker’s or retailer’s mark. It is also stamped twice with the Chinese for pure silver – 足銀 (‘zu yin’).

It is likely to have been made by Thai-Chinese silversmiths in Bangkok in the 19th century.


Naengnoi Punjabhan, Silverware in Thailand, Rerngrom Publishing, 1991.


UK art market

Inventory no.: 3537


The marks to the base.