Basin

English (London)
1567–68
Marked by L reversed, Engraved by P over M


Object Place: Europe, London, England

Dimensions

H. 5.4 cm (2 1/8 in.); Diameter 50 cm (19 11/16 in.); Weight 3,047.7 gm (98 oz)

Accession Number

1979.262

Medium or Technique

Silver, parcel gilt

On View

Alan and Simone Hartman Galleries (Gallery 241)

Collections

Europe

Classifications

Silver

The circular basin has a broad rim with a molded wire edge, a deep depression, and a raised boss. The center of the boss is engraved with a scene of Joshua’s battle with Amelek (Exodus 17). Around the boss is the engraved inscription: SANGUIS IESU CHRISTI FILY DEI EMVNDAT NOS AB OMNI PECCATO IOHANNIS I CV. (The blood of Jesus Christ, Son of God, cleanseth us from all sin.) The well of the basin is engraved with four portrait roundels framed by laurel garlands. Depicted are: Elizabeth I, Mary I, Edward VI, and Henry VIII. Between the roundels are engraved scenes of Abraham’s journey through Canaan (Genesis 12), Lot seduced by his daughters (Genesis ig), the sacrifice of Isaac (Genesis 22), and Rebecca at the well (Genesis 24). The outer rim of the basin is divided by eight roundels depicting Edward V, Edward IV, Henry VI, Henry V, Henry IV, Edward II, Henry VII, and Richard III. Between the roundels are engraved scenes of the birth of Jacob and Esau (Genesis 25), the worship of the golden calf (Exodus 32), the Israelites departing for Egypt (Exodus 13), Passover (Exodus 12), Aaron casting his rod before the Pharaoh (Exodus 7), Joseph interpreting the Pharaoh’s dream (Genesis 41) , Joseph and Potiphar’s wife (Genesis 39), and Joseph cast into the pit (Genesis 37). (Part of a set with the ewer, 1979.261)

Inscription

Engraved twice in central medallion of basin, engraver's monogram P over M

Markings

On underside of basin, maker's mark a pick or sythe (similar to Jackson, 1921, p. 101), lion passant, leopard's head crowned, date letter k with a difference

Provenance

Philip Herbert, fourth Earl of Pembroke and Montgomery (1584-1650); Anne Clifford, Dowager Countess of Dorset, Pembroke, and Montgomery (1590-1676); Nicholas Tufton, third Earl of Thanett (1631-1679); Crichton Brothers, London; J.P. Morgan (1867-1943); sold Parke Bernet, New York, November 1, 1947, lot 466 [the sale catalogue indicated that the ewer and basin had descended in the Hyde family, but this cannot be substantiated], purchased by C. Ruxton Love, New York; purchased by the MFA from S.J. Shrubsole, New York. (Accession date: May 16, 1979)

Credit Line

John H. and Ernestine A. Payne Fund, Theodora Wilbour Fund in memory of Charlotte Beebe Wilbour and funds by exchange from an Anonymous gift in memory of Charlotte Beebe Wilbour (1833-1914), Bequest of Frank Brewer Bemis, the M. and M. Karolik Collection of 18th-century American Arts, Gift of G. Churchill Francis, Gift of the Trustees of Reservation—Estate of Mrs. John Gardner Coolidge, Gift of Phillips Ketchum in memory of John R. Macomber, Gift of Mrs. Richard Cary Curtis, Gift in memory of Dr. William Hewson Baltzell by his wife, Alice Cheney Baltzell, Gift of Mrs. and Mrs. Richard Storey in memory of Mr. Richard Cutts Storey, Gift of Mrs. John B. Sullivan, Jr., Gift of Mrs. Heath-Jones, Bequest of Charles Hitchcock Tyler, Gift of Miss Caroline M. Dalton, Bequest of Clara Bennett, Maria Antoinette Evans Fund, Gift of Miss E. E. P. Holland