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Anglo Indian Vizagapatam Oval Tea Chest

£ 22,000

Height
15.5 cm (6")
Width
29.5 cm (11 1/2")
Depth
19.5 cm (7 3/4")
Extremely rare Oval Anglo Indian Tea Chestmade of solid Rosewood with inlaid and engraved lac filled decoration, made in Vizagapatam.
The beautiful Tea Chest has a silver ring pull to the lid & silver key profile to the front. Bands of engraved ivory with sprouting vine flowers surround the top and base. The front has a wonderful ivory shell decoration which really makes this piece stand out. Opening this fabulous piece reveals yet more engraved bands of ivory, a paterae in the lid, and two fabulous removable tea caddies, each inlaid with a wooden conch shell.

These exotic pieces were crafted with ivory veneer, retailed in Madras and Calcutta by the English and Dutch East India Companies, but primarily manufactured in Vizagapatam on the northern Coromandel Coast.

This tea chest comes with a fully working lock and tasselled key.

The fashion for ivory veneering began in Vizagapatam in the middle of the eighteenth century superceding inlay work as the predominant vogue. Tastes developed and the cabinet-making industry met a demand for decorative items in the neoclassical vogue with the stark contrast of black and white, as seen here. This fashion also influenced the style of engraving that decorated these pieces, which became increasingly restrained, "shedding exotic decorative elements in favour of motifs that were in fashion in Europe.
Height
15.5 cm (6")
Width
29.5 cm (11 1/2")
Depth
19.5 cm (7 3/4")
Year
c. 1800
Medium
Wood, Ivory
Country
India