Luxury Design, Past & Present

A pair Napoleon III Egyptian imperial porphyry urns and covers, each with a shaped cover and baluster body on a concave support and square base, applied with high quality ormolu mounts comprising a flower-bud finial, arched foliate handles, an openwork collar and a bound- reed border round the foot. French, c1870.

Footnote: Porphyry is exceptionally dense and has a high feldspar content so that, when polished, it was described as “powdered with bright stars” by Paul the Silentiary, a 6th century member of the Byzantine imperial household (Vasiliev, 1948:5). Purple Porphyry was reserved exclusively for imperial Roman/Byzantine use and royalty were born in a room lined in it – which explains the phrase ‘born to the purple”. Restrictions on quarrying ensured that this stone retained its high value and luxury status.

22.5" (57 cm)
Late 19th Century
57" (145 cm)

Wick Antiques LTD

Charles Wallrock
unit 2 Riverside Business Park Gosport Street
Lymington SO41 9BB
Tel: 07768 877069
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    A pair Napoleon III Egyptian imperial porphyry urns and covers

    £32,800 GBP
    ~ $34,705

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    Wick Antiques LTD