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Unknown Artist

Incense Burner

Metal, mother-of-pearl

5 1/2 in. x 3 1/2 in. x 4 in. (13.97 cm x 8.89 cm x 10.16 cm)

Bryn Mawr College
Accession Number: 2013.4.14
Other Number(s): W.476 (Wyndham No.)
Deanery.121 (Deanery Number)
Classification: Furnishings and Furniture; Household Accessories
Collection: Deanery Collection
Description: This antique bronze incense burner was used by M. Carey Thomas in her study, the Blue Room. It is globular in form, standing on a round foot. Its cover has a button knob, and it is inlaid with designs in mother-of-pearl.

The incense burner also appears in archival photographs of the Thomas’s large study, the Dorothy Vernon Room, as well as in Alumnae Association-era photographs of the Deanery Lounge.

Keywords Click a term to view the records with the same keyword
This object has the following keywords:
  • bronze - Refers to a broad range of alloys of copper, specifically any non-ferrous alloy of copper, tin, and zinc or other trace metals. Bronze was made before 3,000 BCE -- possibly as early as 10,000 BCE, although its common use in tools and decorative items is dated only in later artifacts. The proportions of copper and tin vary widely, from 70 to 95 percent copper in surviving ancient artifacts. Because of the copper base, bronze may be very malleable and easy to work. By the Middle Ages in Europe, it was recognized that using the metals in certain proportions could yield specific properties. Some modern bronzes contain no tin at all, substituting other metals such as aluminum, manganese, and even zinc. Historically, the term was used interchangeably with "latten." U.S. standard bronze is composed of 90% copper, 7% tin and 3% zinc. Ancient bronze alloys sometimes contained up to 14% tin.
  • incense burners - A vessel or stand in or on which incense is burnt for the purpose of scenting a space, whether or not the action also has a ceremonial purpose. For containers, often in the form of a covered vase or sometimes in the form of a tripod, that hold perfumes or pastilles, use "cassolettes."
  • mother of pearl - Hard, pearly, iridescent internal layer of various kinds of mollusk shell, extensively used for making small articles and inlays.

Additional Images Click an image to view a larger version
Additional Image 2013.4.14_BMC_s_6.jpg
Additional Image 2013.4.14_BMC_s_2.jpg
Additional Image 2013.4.14_BMC_s_4.jpg
Additional Image 2013.4.14_BMC_s_8.jpg

Exhibition List
This object was included in the following exhibitions:
  • "All-Over" Design: Lockwood de Forest between Ahmedabad and Bryn Mawr Bryn Mawr College , Oct 24, 2019 – Mar 1, 2020
  • Home Departure and Destination Bryn Mawr College , Oct 4, 2013 – Dec 31, 2013

Bibliography List
The following Bibliography exist for this object:

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If you would like to cite this object in a Wikipedia article please use the following template:

<ref name=BMC>cite web |url= |title=Incense Burner |author=Bryn Mawr College Library Special Collections |accessdate=5/30/2023 |publisher=Bryn Mawr College</ref>

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