This is another of my antique inkwells in my online store. This one is really unusual and I have never seen another one quite like it.
It must date to the early 20th century - or possibly the late 1920s or early 1930s - when the discovery of the tomb of Tutankamun instigated a mania for all things Egyptian.
This is made of heavy cast brass. The bass section is made separately as a single section - and the figure and inkwells have been applied later and screwed in. The base has a decorative border with applied Egyptian palmettes and lotus flowers all around - and on each long side (which would function as a pen holder space) there are ba-birds with out-spread wings.
In the center of the ink well - is an Egyptian lady. She is sitting with her hands clasped around her knees. She wears a long pleated robe - and you can see all the details of the folds when the inkwell is viewed from the side. She also has long braided hair - and her braids echo the details on her costume. There is a decorative panel on the front. This shows a regal scene with a figure seated on a throne - so I am assuming that the figure might represent Cleopatra or some other regal figure.
Look at her feet - the modeling is quite exquisite and you can even see her tiny toenails. This would never have been mass-produced and would have probably been an expensive desk accessory in its day when first produced. There are no maker's mark on this piece - which is quite surprising.
There are a total of three ink wells with glass liners. The largest is contained within the body of the figure - her upper torso tips back to reveal an aperture that contains a little glass container for the ink.
There are another two ink wells - with hinged lids - made to look like baskets or incense burners and placed at each side of the figure. Again, with glass inkwells - there are rim chips to two of the glass liners - but given the use and age of this item - this is quite acceptable. I have photographed them - indeed, I have taken oodles of images - to allow you to examine all the aspects of this interesting item.
The interior of the well sections has evidence of use and age. There are areas of verdigris to the metal inside commensurate with age and use. This is impossible to replicate in modern pieces.
Dimensions: The base is 20 x 14.5 cm. The height of the sculpture of the seated woman is 15 cm.
It is a very heavy and substantial piece - and unpacked the weight is 1.8 kg. It could have to be sent to you with Parcelforce48. This would cost £10 with tracked and insured service to you.
The weight would prevent me from sending this outside of the UK. Sorry about that.