The Wallace Collection

The Wallace Collection, A Family Collection, A National Museum, An International Treasure House
  • Powder-flask
  • Unknown Artist / Maker
  • Germany
  • c. 1630
  • Walnut wood, antler, wood and steel, engraved and chiselled
  • Height: 19.6 cm
    Weight: 0.255 kg
  • A1286
  • European Armoury III
Images & Media
Further Reading
  • Powder-flask, of walnut, shield-shaped in form, inlaid with a representation of Tobias and the fish in antler, the background filled in with flowers and birds. The back is of plain wood inlaid with two parrots in antler. On the sides are inlays of peacocks, a dog, a monkey and masks. The back is of plain wood inlaid with two parrots in antler. The top is overlaid with antler and engraved with a hare and fox; turned funnel of bright steel with a spring-cap chiselled with a mask and shell; at the side two hinged loops of like workmanship proceeding from cherubs' heads.

    German, about 1630.

    The style of the decoration resembles the coffer, A1345, which is signed by Jean Conrad Tornier of Massevaux, and was previously assigned to his hand. Compare also the decoration of the stock of rifle, A1099. But Hans Schedelmann, in an article on Tornier in the Journal of Arms and Armour Society, II (Dec., 1958), pp. 261-2, ascribes flask, A1286, to 'the Master of the Snail', a stockmaker working in Saxony, c. 1650. There are arms with stocks by the latter in the Tøjhus at Copenhagen and the Kungl. Livrustkammaren at Stockholm. A very similar composition of Tobias, apparently based on the same design, but executed by another hand, forms part of the decoration of a backgammon board in the Victoria and Albert Museum (no. 567-1899).