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Mug with a cover

European goldsmithing between the 16th and the 18th century reached an unprecedented artistic and technical level, which was largely due to German masters operating mostly in the chief goldsmithing centre — Augsburg. Thanks to their mass production and high artistic class, goldsmith products from Augsburg soon dominated the markets of Central and Eastern Europe.

Chalice

Church confraternities, which boasted about having a separate chapel or a side altar, completed the religious life of parishioners. The first confraternity of the Blessed Virgin Mary, established in Niepołomice by Cardinal Zbigniew Oleśnicki, worked efficiently for one and a half centuries, but in 1596 a church inspector found it, as he described, in a state of “devotional and interment” activity.

Soup vase with a monogram of Prince Eustachy Erazm Sanguszko

Sets of tableware were initially assembled of objects made in a different style, time, and places. Only in the 17th and 18th centuries uniformly decorated tableware, known today as services, began to appear. Until the beginning of the 19th century, there were no strict rules determining what dishes should be included in such a set; therefore, they were put together according to current fashions or the personal preference of the person ordering them...

Vessel in the shape of the Polish Eagle

At present, the tableware of the Polish royal court is known to us almost exclusively from archive materials. The majority of preserved single items or their designs come from Augsburg – the most important centre of the European goldsmithery in the 17th and 18th centuries. Among these items, the most outstanding is the state set of John Casimir Vasa.

Pitcher of the City Council of Tarnów

Among the memorabilia of the old town authorities stored in the collection of the Museum in Tarnów, a special place is occupied by a set of three identical tin jugs. These vessels were created in Gdańsk in 1639, probably in the workshop of the master Assmus Virian.

Tea container

Along with the growing popularisation of overseas beverages such as coffee, tea and chocolate, European manufactories also designed vessels used to hold them. At the beginning, they were modelled on familiar Chinese or Japanese forms, but then, gradually, the models took on new shapes unknown to the East.

Stained glass door a mortar surrounded by medicinal plants

Witraż pochodzi z jednej z wrocławskich aptek, dla której około 1900 roku wykonał go warsztat witraży Adolfa Seilera we Wrocławiu. W centralnym punkcie witraża znajduje się moździerz aptekarski, wokół którego rozmieszczono rośliny lecznicze: tojad (Aconitum L.) pokrzyk wilczą jagodę (Atropa belladonna L.), mak lekarski (Papaver somniferum L.) oraz naparstnicę purpurową (Digitalis purpurea L.).

Welcoming goblet

Welcome cup was a decorative container for drinking beer in guild inns during important celebrations. Its Polish name wilkom comes from the German greeting willkommen [welcome]. Each newly arrived guest had to empty the cup filled with an alcoholic beverage in honour of the guild. The production of such cups developed in Germany in the 2nd half of the 16th century, and later spread throughout Europe.

Enamelled vase

A large vase with a hemispherical goblet coated with cloisonné enamel. According to its donor, the vase comes from the Summer Palace of Beijing from the era of the Chinese emperors of the Qing dynasty. It was destroyed in 1860, and then again in 1900.

Teapot with lid

This early form of the teapot, the design of which is ascribed to Johann Jakob Irminger, was amended by a painted decoration outside the factory more than twenty years after the vessel had been finished. The linear, graphical method of painting was ascribed to Christian Daniel Buschow, who operated in Bayreuth.

“Hydria” apothecary vase

A hydria type apothecary vase. Majolica. Savona (Italy). The 2nd half of the 17th century. Handles in the shape of (fantastic) animal heads on massive bent necks. In the front, at the bottom, there is a relief of a gargoyle. In its mouth there is an opening to pour out the content of the vase, plugged with a standard cork. There are smaller gargoyles without openings on the sides of the vessel, under the handles.

Silver cup designed by Jan Matejko

The collection of the Historical Museum of the City of Kraków features an interesting 19th-century goblet of unknown history. According to tradition, it was associated with the figure of Jan Matejko. The silver goblet has a lid made in a historic style, with its form and decoration resembling Gothic chalices.

Small vase “kantharos”

In the Korzec collection in Tarnów, which numbers 450 inventory items, a small vase of the kantharos type deserves special attention. Vases of this type served as decorations and were produced on the occasion of anniversaries or other events. The excellent quality of the product and the elegance of its form and decorations prove the high level of manufacturing quality in the 1st two decades of the 19th century. In Polish museum collections, a similar small vase can be found in the collection of the National Museum in Warsaw.

Pot

The first man settled in Witów, lying in a distance of 4 km from Koszyce, as early as several thousand years ago. The first archaeological finds from this area are dated back to that time — ca. 5 thousand years ago. The local hill on the river was a perfect place to settle. It had its natural defensive features, which were eagerly used by our ancestors who founded subsequent settlements in the Witów area. They left their traces there: vessels, tools, ornaments.

“Corda Fidelium” cup

In the case of the Tarnów collection, the cultural background of the epoch has its counterparts in the Sarmatian culture, characterised by the owner’s need for the ostentatious presentation of his affluence and wealth. The primacy of nobility and magnates, who were in possession of huge estates and enjoyed wide privileges in the 18th century, influenced the development and industrialisation of the country.

Bottles for cologne

Three perfume bottles with labels of the Fryderyk Puls brand.

Orava pitcher

The presented object is a spherical pitcher with a short, narrow neck to which a convex handle is attached. Its lower edge reaches only down to the upper part of the body, without disturbing the graceful spherical shape. In this type of narrow-necked pitchers usually beverages like mead and wine were served. Upper Orava – in the part located on the Polish side – did not have its own pottery workshop, but it was easily supplied with these products at nearby fairs until World War I, mainly in Trzciana (Tyrstyna).

Pre Columbian bowl

This three-coloured bowl on an annular foot, decorated with so-called negative painting, using wax as a reserve material, belongs to the pre-Columbian Carchi-Nariño highland culture from the border of today's Ecuador and Colombia, dating back to around 700 or 800 AD and 1500 AD.

Jewel Box

This large container with a low barrel-shaped belly, a wide neck and an attached hemispherical lid with an arched handle is decorated with an engraved geometrical and plant ornament. These decorations are based on an adherence to the principles of symmetry and harmony according to Quran teachings. The container was made with great attention paid to its appearance and beauty as it is to be a reflection of a better world and to bring good luck.

Apothecary jar for the dissected human skull

Słój apteczny jest wykonany ze szkła mlecznego, z dekoracją w stylu rokoko (II poł. XVIII w.). Szyldzik okala złoty pierścień ozdobiony czerwonobrunatnym, spiętym w środku wianuszkiem. W środku napis wykonany dwubarwną majuskułą: „CRAN: HUMN: PPT”, czyli „czaszka ludzka...