Betel box and stand  

Posted by ေရွးျမန္မာ in

Object-Betel box and stand
Date-3rd quarter 19th century
Techniques-Filigree work in gold on a gold ground, outlined with bands of rubies and imitation emeralds, with some embossing; eyes of rubies (one now missing)
Place-Mandalay (City), Burma

Height 41.5 cm
Length 35.5 cm
Width 18 cm
Current Location-Victoria & Albert Museum
Museum number-IS.246&A-1964

This gold and jewelled container once formed part of the regalia of King Thibaw, the last Burmese king (r.1878-1885). The karaweik, a mythical bird, is a symbol of longevity. The container was used at the royal palace at Mandalay as part of a betel paraphernalia set. The offering of betel--a mildly narcotic chewing quid--was an essential element of traditional Burmese society. Every household, including the royal family's, had a set of utensils for its preparation. Betel leaves, used to wrap the blend of areca-nut shavings, lime and spices, were stored in the karaweik container.

This object was given to the Museum by the Government and people of Burma in generous recognition of the Victoria and Albert Museum's safekeeping of the Burmese royal regalia from 1886 to 1964.

This entry was posted on Mar 26, 2009 at Thursday, March 26, 2009 and is filed under . You can follow any responses to this entry through the comments feed .


Post a Comment