A Very Rare and large Bezoar stone , probably from an Elephant

A Very Rare and large Bezoar stone , probably from an Elephant

1600 to 1800 India ?

Offered by Finch & Co

Sold
Request Information Call Dealer
Favourite Item
A Very Rare and large Bezoar stone , probably from an Elephant . With turned oak stand
17 th – 18 th Century

Size : 21.5 cm high ( overall ) , 13 cm dia. - 8½ ins high ( overall ) , 5 ins dia.
The word ‘Bezoar’ comes from the Persian bad-sahr meaning ‘poison antidote’ , and in the 16 th century they were believed to be panaceas for numerous ills . A ‘must have’ for any renaissance or enlightenment kunstkammer a bezoar stone is formed from accretions in the stomachs of ruminants that have become ossified . This example is so large that it is probably from an elephant . A smaller one exists of late 16 th century origin in the cabinet of Emperor Rudolf II of Prague ( now in the Kunst Historisches Museum , Vienna ) mounted in gold , rubies and emeralds , which is said to be from a camel or goat .
Rudolf borrowed bezoars from his kunstkammer and wore them in the hope of curing his chronic melancholy . He had a cup made of one mounted in enamel and gold for it was believed that whoever drank from such a cup could be certain that any poison in the draft would be rendered harmless . In 16 th century Europe bezoars fetched up to ten times their weight in gold such was the belief in their magical powers and beneficial properties .


Dimensions
Height 21.50 cm (8.46 inches)
Width 13.00 cm (5.12 inches)
Medium
Bezoar stone
Finch & Co

Finch & Co
Suite No 744
2 Old Brompton Road
London
SW7 3DQ
England

+44 (0)20-7413 9937
+44 (0)7836 684133
Favourite Dealer
Request Dealer Alerts
Opening Hours
Contacts
Member Since 2006
Members of
View Full Details

Browse More Items From Finch & Co

View Dealer's Gallery