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Armenian Engraved Tray Of Kings, 19th Century. Iran


A masterpiece of Armenian art during the Qajar period. Engraved brass tray measuring 41 cm long by 23.5 cm wide and 1.5 cm high. Weight: 1157 grams

This tray depicts the legend of the Armenians. In a large central medallion with pendants "Mother Armenia lamenting among the ruins"

"The ruins of Ani, capital of Armenia under the Bagratid kings, in the 10th and 11th centuries" surrounded by four smooth mandorlas decorated with the portraits of the kings associated with their name inscribed in Armenian for each in a cartouche.

These elements are found in a set of texts, "Fall of Edessa, Writings of the Catastrophe". The medallions are inscribed in a decor abounding with interlacing of flowers, shrubs, birds, deer, sheep, of an extraordinary quality of engravings, which one finds in Qajar art. The composition of the tray is treated like a carpet, large central medallion with pendants, and edges of the tray worked like borders. The outer edge is smooth and hemmed. This piece of remarkable quality of work is part of the Kadjar period, its area of creation is more likely Persia, Iran today.

1. Vramshapuh, top left:

(Armenian: Վռամշապուհ) served as a Sasanian client king of Arsacid Armenia from 389 until 414,

2. Ashot I the Great, bottom right

Ashot I (Armenian: Աշոտ Ա; c. 820 – 890) was an Armenian king who oversaw the beginning of Armenia's second golden age (862 – 977). He was the son of Smbat VIII the Confessor and was a member of the Bagratuni Dynasty.

3. Achot II of Armenia (in Armenian Աշոտ Բ) or Achot Erkath (Աշոտ Երկաթ) bottom left:

An Armenian king of the royal Bagratuni line. He was the son and successor of King Smbat I. His reign was filled with rebellions by vassals and pretenders to the throne, as well as foreign invasions, which Ashot fought off successfully, for which he is remembered by the epithet Yerkat (Երկաթ), or the Iron.

4. Tiridates III, Top right(Armenian: Տրդատ Գ Trdat III; c. AD 250 – c. 330), also known as Tiridates the Great (Armenian: Տրդատ Մեծ Trdat Mets), or Tiridates IV, to distinguish him from another Tiridates thought to have ruled several years earlier, was an Armenian Arsacid king[2] (298 – c. 330). In 301, Tiridates proclaimed Christianity as the state religion of Armenia, making the Armenian kingdom the first state to embrace Christianity officially.

Tray with Armenian Kings 19th C