A rare gunpowder flask featuring a delicate horn shape from our upcoming Timed Auction shows an intriguing part of war history. Invented in the late Tang dynasty in the 9th century, gunpowder is considered as one of the four great inventions of ancient China. Later, a chemical formula for gunpowder was recorded in the Song dynasty in the 11th century before the Mongol invasion occurred in the 13th century. This resulted in the first appearance of the cannon and widespread use of gunpowder in Asia, Middle East, and Europe.
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Undoubtedly, gunpowder’s application in warfare appeared in several cultures around the globe. Not only its functions but also aesthetics have identified uniqueness of each nation. In Japanese culture, black powder container called Kayakuire (火薬入れ) was an essential accessory for Samurai. This was also among the most beautiful objects found in Mughal India, Islamic countries, and Europe.
It is important that gunpowder container is made of nonflammable substance such as brass and bronze. This highlight item is a beautiful wood carved and embellished with two sculpted lions symbolized as emperor guardians. The lions are typically decorated in Chinese architecture such as temples. In high society, this artfully designed portable container made of valuable materials such as ivory. Horn was also a popular material of choices because it was easy to find in ancient time. Besides, water-resistant quality was very important when this kind of portable containers was used in the battlefield. Complete with nozzle, cap, and attached safety chain, it came in a range of sizes which was dependent on many different types of weapons.
In craftsmanship, it was mostly characterized by natural motifs such as oak leaves, elaborate hunting and fighting scenes, and sometimes the name of an owner.
To put it simply, this highlight not only serves as a rare collectible to admire but a commemorative piece of history.
A wooden gun powder container carved with birds and flowers designDimensions: L 27 cm H 10.5 cm
Circa: Late 20th Century
Estimate: THB 6,000 – THB 7,000
Starting Price: THB 6,000
Bid this lot here