Arabic written

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amena
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Arabic written

Postby amena » Mon Dec 21, 2015 12:02 pm

Apparently I'm attracted by odd objects.
I found this box which is made up from two cannon shells dated 1903.
Image
It is made of brass with decorations in copper and silver.
Actually there is very little silver.
There are three cartouches with what I think are Arabic letters.
I'd be curious to know what it says. Does anyone know the answer?
Thanks
Amena

WarrenKundis
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Re: Arabic written

Postby WarrenKundis » Tue Jan 26, 2016 8:09 pm

Good day Amena,

I asked two different Muslim brothers about the calligraphy. Both of them stated that there are Arabic letters there but the words make no sense. Egypt or Syria possible made for the export market. I have seen a number of vases and trays in the same style made of brass, silver overlay with copper wire. I have two on my Facebook page, let me see if I can post an example.

Warren

AG2012
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Re: Arabic written

Postby AG2012 » Wed Jan 27, 2016 6:32 am

Being a Muslim does not necessarily mean one can understand what`s written in Arabic script. I suppose your friends are Arabs and if they could not understand it, at least Arabic language is excluded. It could be e.g. Farsi or Urdu. Another possibility is Ottoman Empire before alphabet reform and that`s the problem; even college educated Turks cannot read it unless they are linguistic experts. I have a Turkish beaker and the inscription was deciphered by a college professor who worked at the department of Oriental studies. Unfortunately, that was many years ago and I cannot help. You can try at a college, too. They usually have Persian and Turkish departments.
Kindest regards

amena
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Re: Arabic written

Postby amena » Wed Jan 27, 2016 8:26 am

Thank you both for your help.
This type of decoration is typical of the area between Turkey and Persia, as I saw on the internet. I have other vessels of the same style, but I was curious to know what could be written in an object of military derivation.
Also I have asked an Arab who could not decipher the words.
My curiosity will remain unsatisfied
Best regards
Amena

WarrenKundis
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Re: Arabic written

Postby WarrenKundis » Wed Jan 27, 2016 1:48 pm

Good day everyone,

Let's see if we can narrow this down a little closer. And yes AG I completely agree with you about any Muslim's ability to read especially Quranic text properly. The first Brother is Egyptian, his only thought that it was supposed to be an opening Ayah or verse describing one of the 99 attributes of Allah(swt) but it was not properly written. The second Brother is an Urdu speaker who teaches Quran. And yes in the Ottoman Empire they used three different languages to administer it. Have seen PHds have trouble giving me a date on an Ottoman beaker.

As I had stated, there are two trays posted on my Facebook page which show very very similar motif which through my research at the time I described as late 19th early 20th century Mamluk Revival Damascene ware, silver overlay, copper wire on brass. Will try to post some images soon. Do have a closer look at Mamluk Revival and Damascene ware.

Oh by the way, Amena can you post a closer image of the floral elements. Are they silver?

Warren

AG2012
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Re: Arabic written

Postby AG2012 » Thu Jan 28, 2016 4:41 am

Good luck! The inscription being on cannon shells may include geographical names, dates etc.I mean not necessarily quotes from Koran.It must be some kind of memento often described as ``trench art``although I disagree with the term because soldiers could not make objects like this sitting in trenches.Anyway, Arabic and Urdu are excluded.Concentrate on Ottoman Empire, but it`s difficult outside colleges.

WarrenKundis
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Re: Arabic written

Postby WarrenKundis » Thu Jan 28, 2016 12:16 pm

AG,

Indulge me for a moment and look up the term/s. Just did so, found numerous examples of the same kind of work. You can not also exclude the fact that the craftsman himself may have been illiterate. True I have not as yet found a scholarly article that identifies it exactly, let me see if I can. I'm not ruling out Turkey or Egypt but I do feel that Cairo or Damascus, since were both ruled by different Mamluk dynasties are better possibilities for the moment.

As far as what Amena has, it does not appear to be made from artillery shells as you pointed out. Amena is it a cuff bracelet?

Warren

amena
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Re: Arabic written

Postby amena » Fri Jan 29, 2016 9:27 am

Hello Warren
the object is a box and it is certainly formed by two shells of artillery.
I attach two photos of the details of the decorations.
The white metal is silver (not sterling)
The decoration is not of high quality, and so it may be a object of "trench art".
For comparison see the picture of a bowl of the same type
http://imgur.com/a/HfkB3
(sorry, Tinypic is unavailable at the moment)
Regards
Amena

WarrenKundis
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Posts: 609
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Re: Arabic written

Postby WarrenKundis » Fri Jan 29, 2016 11:55 am

Good morning Amena,


Yes I can now recognize the sharp edge of the firing end of the shell casings. Do check the ends for dates, please shoot them if they are different from the other examples you posted. Yes artillery shells are produced in the millions, may have been stored for years. Either used by the country that produced them or sold to Allies during conflicts. Once used they have laid around in huge piles before other uses were found for them.

This particular box may, may, fall into two categories. Trench art made in the for a lack of a better term in the style of "Mamluk Revival Damascene ware." Post-conflict or during
WWI?

Warren


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