AN OTTOMAN GILT-COPPER (TOMBAK) LIDDED EWER, WITH ASSOCIATED BASIN AND FILTER, TURKEY, 18TH CENTURY
the ewer with truncated pyriform body with tall waisted neck, applied swan-necked spout and handle, hinged domical lid topped by stylised pinecone, hammered, engraved and punched decoration of floral garlands, together with a large basin and detachable openwork filter, en-suite design
ewer: 33.5cm. height
basin: 9.6 by 38.2cm.
filter: 23cm. diam.
The ewer with losses to tombak gilding and scratches, remnants of cleaning material, lid doesn't fit completely, the basin with some dents, also with rubbing to surface and scratches resulting in discoloration of gilding, the filter also with some minor dents and losses to gilding due to rubbing and scratches, as consistent with age and use, as viewed.
"In response to your inquiry, we are pleased to provide you with a general report of the condition of the property described above. Since we are not professional conservators or restorers, we urge you to consult with a restorer or conservator of your choice who will be better able to provide a detailed, professional report. Prospective buyers should inspect each lot to satisfy themselves as to condition and must understand that any statement made by Sotheby's is merely a subjective, qualified opinion. Prospective buyers should also refer to any Important Notices regarding this sale, which are printed in the Sale Catalogue.
NOTWITHSTANDING THIS REPORT OR ANY DISCUSSIONS CONCERNING A LOT, ALL LOTS ARE OFFERED AND SOLD AS IS" IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE CONDITIONS OF BUSINESS PRINTED IN THE SALE CATALOGUE."
Tombak wares became particularly popular during the eighteenth and nineteenth century for their gold-like quality (Petsopoulos 1982, pp.33-35). During Ottoman times it was considered inappropriate for vessels in solid gold to be used for utilitarian purposes; copper-gilt (tombak) wares were preferred instead. A number of tombak objects from the royal kitchenware are now in the Topkapi Palace Museum, including a sherbet pitcher, a rose-water sprinkler and a ewer comparable in form to the present piece (Istanbul 1986, pp.43-45, pl.2 and pl.3). Tombak manufacture entailed applying gold leaf and mercury to amalgam-gilded copper. A tombak ewer of almost identical form and decoration was sold in these rooms, 25 October 2017, lot 158.