The Wallace Collection

The Wallace Collection, A Family Collection, A National Museum, An International Treasure House
  • Powder-flask
  • Unknown Artist / Maker
  • Germany
  • mid 16th century
    19th century (mounts)
  • Antler and silver, carved
  • Height: 26 cm
    Weight: 0.435 kg
  • A1251
  • European Armoury III
Images & Media
Further Reading
  • Powder-flask, of antler, with two branches in base, the front finely carved in low relief with a representation of Hercules wrestling with Antæus, and at the base the head of his mother, Earth; trophies of arms and shields in the background, a blank oval cartouche at the top. Turned funnel of silver with a sliding cut-off, but without a cap; the ends of the branches capped with silver mounts like the top, plain except for turned lines and a beaded edge; four rings for suspension. The belt hook is missing.

    The companion primer is catalogued under A1303.

    Of similar workmanship to the powder-flask, A1248: the silver mounts are of a later date than the rest.

    Flask, German, mid- 16th century; mounts 19th century.
    Asselineau, pl. 46 (Sommesson); Souvenirs de la Galerie Pourtalès, 1862; L' Art Ancien, III-394; Musée Rétrospectif, 1865, no. 2039 (Spitzer); the catalogue states that it was engraved in the Gazette des Beaux-Arts, but this is probably a confusion with A1303; L' Art pour Tous VII, 1868, no. 189, fig.1672.

    Provenance: Fiérard sale, 1846; Sommesson sale, 1848, lot 198 (195 fr.); Comte de Pourtalès-Gorgier, 6 February, 1865, lot 1651, 2,950 fr.(Monture en argent dore de travail moderne), (Willestrand); Frédéric Spitzer.

    A flask, also depicting a labour of Hercules and perhaps from the same hand, is in the Musée de l' Armée, Paris (M 2023).