Different forms of besamin boxes

Besamin boxes—also known as censers or scent boxes — can take on various forms; the most common ones, however, are tower-shaped besamin boxes, like the ones belonging to the collection of the Historical Museum of the City of Kraków and the Irena and Mieczysław Mazaraki Museum in Chrzanów presented on our website.
This is the most popular form of spice boxes, widely known as early as the Middle Ages. Its appearance often imitated local architecture, whereas the symbolical point of reference was the Strong Tower, being the Biblical symbol of God. Besamin boxes were usually made of silver, sometimes of other metals and were often decorated with enamel and precious stones. A widely popular technique was fine filigree, visible also in our two exhibits.

Elaborated by the Editorial team of Małopolska’s Virtual Museums,
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Besamin tower box
Besamin tower box from Vienna