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This fine silver rosewater sprinkler is of solid, chased and pierced silver that has been parcel-gilded (the highlights have been plated with gold).
It sits in a pierced, domed, oval foot that is decorated with leaf motifs. The body is of flattened, tear-shaped form which narrows as it rises. The body is chased with floral and leafy scrollwork with the flowers decorated with gold highlighting. The shoulders are chased in high relief with leaf motifs with deep ribs. The body is surmounted by a ribbed, and parcel-gilded sphere from which the neck of the vessel rises. This too is chased and parcel-gilded. The head of the sprinkler through which the scented water is emitted is presented as a bunch of flowers. The ‘stems’ of the flowers are twisted around one another.
Such sprinklers were used in India at important ceremonies such as weddings. They were also used to scent rooms, and were offered to guests as they arrived at an important home so that they might freshen up after a journey.
Overall, this sprinkler is highly decorative and sculptural. The silverwork is very fine and the interplay between the gold and the silver is very pleasing. It sits solidly without rocking.
Terlinden, C., Mughal Silver Magnificence, Antalga, 1987.
Zebrowski, M., Gold, Silver & Bronze from Mughal India, Alexandria Press, 1997.