This little casket has an animal décor: two eagles flank a pair of rabbits they seem to be eyeing hungrily. Two lions seem about to pounce on a pair of gazelles. Although eagles and lions are usually power symbols, they may here be merely decorative without any particular symbolic meaning.
In the 11th century, after the fall of the caliphate of Cordoba, several ivory workshops took refuge in Cuenca, which was then part of the kingdom of Toledo. They carried on the tradition of ivory carving begun under the caliphs, but instead of selling their work to the Umayyade family, they turned to rich, anonymous customers.
This casket is intact although it no longer has its original ironwork.
Reproduction in resin with patina
Height: 14.5 cm.
Length: 8,5 cm.
Depth: 4 cm.
Weight: 0,200 kg.
Origin: Spain - Cuenca - Mid 11th century.
Artistic currents: Arts of Islam, XIth century
Museum: Paris - Museum of the Louvre.