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Object of the Month

In this monthly blog series, our collections team write about their Object of the Month, chosen from our collection.

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Tsongkhapa

Tsongkhapa

Our April Object of the Month is a highlight of Chiddingstone Castle’s Buddhist collection. It is a gilt bronze statue of Tsongkhapa, an important Tibetan Buddhist teacher or Lama who lived from 1357 to 1419.

Amulet

Amulet

This tiny stone amulet is inscribed with the throne name of the pharaoh Thutmoses III on one side, and an image of the pharaoh as a sphinx on the other. It was made to be worn in daily life for protection and in honour of the pharaoh, whose image as a divine ruler lasted long after his death.

Silver button

Silver button

According to Denys Eyre Bower, this small silver button has a fascinating past. He attributed it to the ‘Cycle Club’ which was established in Wales in the early 18th century as a secret Jacobite society.

Lacquer box with itomari

Lacquer box with itomari

Our object of the month for January is a small round lacquer box decorated with two items which are important for New Year celebrations in Japan – itomari and mizuhiki. Itomari, or ‘thread balls’ are decorative balls made from silk and colourful threads which are gifted to children. Mizuhiki, or decorative knots, are tied around gifts or money envelopes.

Nefertiti

Nefertiti

Replica of Bust of Nefertiti Maker unknown20th centuryPainted plaster The bust of Nefertiti, which was purchased by Denys Eyre Bower, is a copy of the original one and is part of his Egyptian collection. It can be seen on the mantelpiece in the Egyptian room at...

Guardian lions

Guardian lions

This miniature pair of fierce guardian lions have been chosen as our November object of the month. Made from gilt bronze in China in the 18th century, they are smaller versions of the statues which stand either side of the entrance to important buildings, in particular Buddhist temples.

Inro with Lord Enma

Inro with Lord Enma

Our Object of the Month for October is an inro – a small tiered case which men carried hanging from their belts as part of traditional Japanese dress. The inro is decorated in lacquer with a bold design of one of the ten judges of hell, Lord Enma.

Florence Nightingale’s pen tray

Florence Nightingale’s pen tray

Marble pen tray Derbyshire, 19th century Black marbleAlongside the Ancient Egyptian artefacts, Asian works of art, and Jacobite memorabilia, the Castle collection includes objects which illustrate the life of Denys Eyre Bower. There is an archive of Denys’ letters,...

Stela of Siamun

Stela of Siamun

Our Object of the Month is a limestone stela, which reveals details of the life of a man called Siamun in Ancient Egypt. Stelas were monuments or plaques which could commemorate events or the lives of people with hieroglyphs and inscriptions. Siamun’s stela lists his titles, members of his family, and requests that expensive and luxurious offerings be made to please the gods.

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