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It is one of the most magnificent Baroque, secular works of Polish goldsmithery preserved in the collection in the world. The scenes most emphasized on the goblet are connected with weaving. This was the main source of income for the residents of Leszno in the 17th century. Two of them illustrate everyday occupations – shearing and weaving, and the third one clearly has a allegorical meaning.

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A cup with a round profiled foot, a baluster shaft with an egg-shaped nodus, a broad profiled goblet, and a lid shaped similarly to the foot. There are three oval medallions on the base depicting putti frolicking with sea creatures, as well as acanthine motifs and pairs of birds with fruit garlands. The lower part of the shaft, the baluster, is ornamented with flat buckles. Three grotesque masks between female herms on the nodus can be seen. In the lower part of the goblet, on elongated medallions, mythological scenes are depicted: Thisbe and a lion, Thisbe over Pyramus's body, and Venus and Adonis (Ovid, the Metamorphoses, IV: 101–104, 153–162; X: 537–538). In the middle area, in smaller oval medallions, there are depictions of a town landscape with a bridge, a traveller in front of a church, and a scholar or a weaver in a workshop, enclosed with acanthine motifs. In the top part of the goblet, in large oval medallions with motifs of coquillage herms, the following scenes are depicted: sheep shearing, a meeting of rulers (probably King Mesha of Moab standing in front of Achab, King of Israel – 2 Kings 3: 4), workers in a weaving workshop powered by a watermill. Between them, there is a dual-zone composition with a bird above a sitting putto. On the lid, in three oval medallions, putti are shown having fun and playing instruments (lute, violin and bagpipes) between fruit festoons held by birds; the rim is ornamented with an engraved acanthine twig. The vessel is topped with a figure in the round of a parrot sitting on a branch.
It is one of the most magnificent Baroque, secular works of Polish goldsmithery preserved in the collection in the world. The scenes most emphasized on the goblet are connected with weaving. This was the main source of income for the residents of Leszno in the 17th century. Two of them illustrate everyday occupations – shearing and weaving, and the third one clearly has a allegorical meaning. The sources of the depictions connected with themes of work and unhappy love were undoubtedly suggested by an erudite person. The unusual splendour of the vessel and the detail of its ornamentation that covers all its basic components suggest that this unique work was a luxurious present (of a representative of the Leszczyński family?). As there are no coats of arms, house marks or elaborated inscriptions on the vessel, it could not have been intended for guild use.

Elaborated by Dariusz Nowacki (Wawel Royal Castle), editorial team of Małopolska’s Virtual Museums, © all rights reserved

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