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Jeweled Casket with Birds

Object Name:
Casket
Date:
19th century
Geography:
India
Medium:
Nephrite; inlaid with gold, inset with diamonds, sapphires, rubies, pearl, and mother-of-pearl
Dimensions:
4 x 6 3/8 in. (10.2 x 16.2 cm)
Classification:
Stone
Credit Line:
The Sylmaris Collection, Gift of George Coe Graves, 1930
Accession Number:
30.103a, b
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 463
This small green and white jade casket is adorned with groups of jeweled parakeets, peacocks, and flowers outlined in inlaid gold. Jade working is an exceptionally time-consuming process that requires a great deal of skill due to the hard and brittle nature of the stone. Highly skilled artisans of the Mughal Empire carved works like this example from jade that they then inset with precious gems. These objects, decorated with floral motifs favored by the Mughal elite, were often exchanged as gifts.
George Coe Graves, Osterville, MA (until 1930; gifted to MMA)
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