Spherical body urn with cover (one of a pair)

possibly Italian

Not on view

The ‘timeless’ Neo-Classical design of this fine pair of spherical Imperial porphyry urns makes their dating particularly difficult. They are likely to have been produced between 1770 and 1820 and could have been acquired by a grand tourist to Italy around that time. While earlier, more elaborately designed urns gave the carver the opportunity to display their artistic virtuosity, this plainer example puts the emphasis on the mesmerizing color of the porphyry stone. This particular example shows variations of light pink and black speckles.

Spherical body urn with cover (one of a pair), Imperial red porphyry, gilt bronze, possibly Italian

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