A rare Venetian or German façon de Venise opalescent beaker and cover moulded with 'The Triumph of Neptune', circa 1600
Lot 11
A rare Venetian or German façon de Venise opalescent beaker and cover moulded with 'The Triumph of Neptune', circa 1600
Sold for £2,250 (US$ 3,631) inc. premium

Lot Details
A rare Venetian or German façon de Venise opalescent beaker and cover moulded with 'The Triumph of Neptune', circa 1600
A rare Venetian or German façon de Venise opalescent beaker and cover moulded with 'The Triumph of Neptune', circa 1600
The cylindrical bowl moulded with a frieze in relief of Neptune, three sea nymphs, two seahorses and trumpet-blowing Tritons above a continuous band of stylised waves, engraved with a crowned mirror monogram RLZ within a laurel wreath on one side, the reverse with a coat of arms, set on three ribbed flattened globular feet, the moulded domed cover with three fish radiating from the centre within waves, surmounted by ball finial engraved with a perching bird, 25.7cm high (damaged, repaired and crizzled) (2)

Footnotes

  • Provenance:
    With Heide Hübner, Würzburg, 1990

    The arms are those of the Barons of Geyer Edelsbach. The family was still living in Lower Austria in the early 18th Century but is now believed to have died out.

    The present lot belongs to a group of eight known examples moulded with the 'Triumph of Neptune'. They are all presumed to have been cast from the same mould. However, our example may be one of only two known that sit on three ribbed feet. The other was in the Lanna Collection (sold at Rudolphe Lepke's, Berlin, 28 March 1911, Sammlung Lanna II catalogue 1605, p.89, lot 712 and pl.62). Holzhausen was the first to draw attention to these glasses, in 1954, where he has summarised seven of them.

    Similar examples are illustrated by Corning Museum, 'Three Great Centuries of Venetian Glass', exhibition catalogue (1958), No. 120, pl.106 and Glass of the Alchemists (2008), p.83, fig.6. The authors suggest that the glass is from Gratzen, Buquoy Glassworks, circa 1680. In a 1685 inventory of opal (Waissl) glass in Buquoy's Vienna store '2 grosses Bächer mit Teckel und Figurn pr. 5 fr' are recorded (published in Hirsch 1936, p.60).

    For a similar uncrizzled 'opal' glass example in the British Museum see Hugh Tait, Five Thousand Years of Glass (1991), pp.165-166, pl.211, made in a three-part mould with a continuous frieze depicting a Marine Triumph in the Italian Renaissance manner. The unusual cover has three dolphins moulded in high relief, Venice or Façon de Venise, 16th/17th centuries, also illustrated in The Golden Age of Venetian Glass (1979), no. 177, pl.178 and col. pl.13.

    The Dresden beaker is recorded in an inventory of Schloss Pillnitz in 1734 as "Ein blaulichter Willkommen mit Figuren..." and is identical with "Groß antiqvisch Becher Glass, mit einer Stürtze, aufm Glass, sind unterschiedene erhabene Figuren, als Meer-Pferde und Syrenen...", the gift of the Privy Kammerdiener Steinhauer from Weißenfeld to Augustus the Strong in 1731.

    See also Sabine Baumgärtner, 'Glaskunst vom Mittelalter bis zum Klassizismus, catalogue of the Focke-Museum, Bremen (1987), no.46
    Rudolf Strasser and Walter Spiegl, Dekoriertes Glas: The Collection of Rudolf von Strasser (1989), p.120, pl.128
    Walter Holzhausen, 'Sächsische Gläser des Barock', Zeitschrift für Kunstwissenschaft 8 (1954), p.106ff, pl.9
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