Dutch silver-mounted coconut cup and cover

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Origin
Netherlands
Period
Second half 17th century
Material
Coconut, engraved, silver, chased
Dimensions
27.5 cm

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Description

A silver-mounted coconut and cover. The chased foot with leaves and putti. The body of the cup formed by a coconut carved with three mythological figures; Herakles, Apollo and Artemis surrounded by floral motifs. The chased cover with leaves and a male figure finial.

Coconut cups were very popular amongst the wealthy and royalty of the 17th century. They were very sought-after as collectable vessels. Coconuts were considered to be rare and precious, and they were believed to have magical and healing properties. They were also known as ‘Indian nuts’ or ‘nuts of the sea’. Drinking vessels made from coconuts were believed to protect the drinker against poison.

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