Gilt-brass marriage casket

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Northern Netherlands
C. 1650
gilded brass, iron
3.3 cm
6 cm
4.1 cm

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This small gilt brass marriage box is engraved with floral motifs on all sides and a scene of a man and a woman on the lid. On top of the lid, next to the oval handle, is the decorated lock. The lid is engraved with a standing man and woman, dressed in fine clothes: the woman wears the characteristic collar and overcoat, the man has long stockings, baggy trousers, doublet and broad-brimmed hat. The woman holds a single rose in her right hand. Between them is a laid table with a jug and a glass, and a city is visible in the background.

Considering the decorations, the casket is probably a wedding casket, which was made and presented on the occasion of an engagement or marriage ceremony. Larger caskets were filled with valuables and given to the woman by her parents or the husband. After the wedding, the casket was used to store valuables like jewels and money.


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