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HOME : Islamic Art : Islamic Masterpieces : Bidri silver damascened water-pipe base
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Bidri silver damascened water-pipe base - MS.1598
Origin: India
Circa: 1800 AD to 1900 AD
Dimensions: 6.5" (16.5cm) high x 5.5" (14.0cm) depth
Collection: Bidri Ware
Style: Moghul


Additional Information: C

Location: Great Britain
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Description
Bidri is a brass alloy, which contains zinc, copper, lead, tin and traces of iron. The usual yellow brass may contain not more than 40-50 per cent zinc. Copper constitutes the predominant phase. After making the surface smooth, a solution of copper sulphate is applied to the Bidri Ware to darken it temporarity for engraving. The engraving tools cut the intricate but delicate tapestry of design into the metal, which is then lighter in colour. Each piece is then handed over to the inlayer. The inlay may be of silver, brass or gold. The surface of the decoration blackens after the inlay has been burnished. This is done by applying a paste of ammonium chloride, potassium nitrate, sodium chloride, copper sulphate and mud which darkens the body by producing a characteristic black patina, but without damaging the inlay. - (MS.1598)

 

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