Rock Crystal Ewer and Underplate by Karl Rössler

  • This rare Viennese ewer and underplate are formed of intricately etched rock crystal
  • The coveted plaques are mounted in gilded and enamel silver
  • The duo was crafted by renowned Viennese craftsman Karl Rössler
  • It is exemplary of Austrian mastery over the arts of enamel and rock crystal
  • Get complete item description here
Item No. 31-1523

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This rare Viennese ewer and underplate are formed of intricately etched rock crystal, a luminous mineral that was among the most precious and expensive materials used in the decorative arts at the time of its creation. The highly coveted plaques are mounted in gilded silver, which has been further adorned by meticulously hand-painted enamel in a neoclassical motif. The combination of rock crystal and enamel work suggests this ewer was almost certainly created for a client of great import. Crafted by renowned Viennese craftsman Karl Rössler, it represents a stunning marriage between luxury materials and the Viennese art of enameling.

Rock crystal, or pure quartz, has been lauded for centuries for its inherent beauty. Ancient Roman Pliny the Elder found its clarity so impressive that he believed it was actually ice that had hardened over millennia. When carved, rock crystal appears far more lustrous than any man-made crystal or glass, so much so that it has even been used in place of diamonds. Its brilliance and purity, combined with its relative scarcity, secured rock crystal’s status as one of the most highly valued minerals throughout history.

Karl Rössler is among the finest craftsmen of this coveted stone. He began his business in Vienna in 1890, following in the footsteps of the great Hermann Ratzersdorfer, who had made waves at the 1873 Vienna World Exhibition. Working the neo-Renaissance style, Rössler created works in enamel, silver and semi-precious stones throughout his career, though it is his rock crystal creations that remain among his most prized.

Bears Karl Rössler's "KR" maker's mark

Circa 1890

Ewer: 5 3/4" wide x 4" deep x 10 1/4" high Underplate: 9 1/2 " diameter x 1 1/4" high
Rock Crystal Ewer and Underplate by Karl Rössler
Maker: Karl Rössler
Period: 19th Century
Origin: Austria
Type: Rock Crystal
Depth: 1.25 Inches
Width: 9.5 Inches
Height: 9.5 Inches

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