Deccan Oval Box

(inclusive of taxes)

All orders are insured for transit.

This item cannot be shipped outside India.


Size: 11.25 x 9.5 x 5 inches
Material: Copper
Origin: North Karnataka


This is a Deccan, repoussed copper, oval-shaped box from North Karnataka, which would have been used to store valuables. The lid and sides are engraved with beautiful scrollwork vines and hamsas. Hamsa, which is possibly a swan or goose, is revered by Hindus, Buddhists, and Jains. It is seen as a symbol of purity, detachment and divine knowledge. Hamsa symbolizes the highest spiritual accomplishment as it swims in water, walks on earth and flies in the sky. The box has a circular copper handle at the top, with two flowers at the base. These flower motifs are repeated as engravings on the double hinges at the back.
The Deccan sultanates were five dynasties that ruled late medieval South Indian kingdoms, namely Bijapur, Golkonda, Ahmadnagar, Bidar, and Berar. These sultanates were located on the Deccan Plateau. Their architecture was a regional variant of Indo-Islamic architecture, heavily influenced by the Delhi sultanate and later Mughal architecture.
Mark Zebrowski describes how these Persian influences combined with local traditions and says, “We are left with two contrasting pairs of qualities: order and restraint versus richness and sensuousness. Odd bedfellows, one might well imagine, but it is precisely the cohabitation of such near-opposites, partly reconciled to each other, but partly in eternal opposition, that endows Mughal (sic Deccan) objects with their magic power to arrest our attention and invigorate our souls.”