Mazer bowl with sacred monogram

Mazer bowl with sacred monogram

Mazer bowl with sacred monogram
Turned maple wood with gilded silver mounts
Probably England
About 1480
Museum no. Loan:Gilbert.576-2008
© Victoria and Albert Museum, London

This type of shallow, turned wood drinking vessel was a common form in England until the early-16th century. They were often embellished with silver mounts, and some survive which have a similar moulded print in the centre of the bowl. The moulded print would originally have been enamelled, and bears an engraved quatrefoil, surrounded by engraved flowers, with the sacred monogram IHS. The monogram suggests this bowl may have belonged to a religious institution, such as a monastery, or a quasi-religious institution, such as a hospital.