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East India Company - Expo Paris 1855

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Five showcases in the oriental style contain the famous Indian shawls and rich fabrics embroidered with gold and silver, feathers, skullcaps, etc. In the right-hand aisle, along the wall, are ordinary fabrics, chests, models of canoes, carriages, representations of a prince with his retinue, a wedding, a court of justice, etc. Musical instruments are also on display, and further on printed and handwritten books, models of mosques and the like. Near a doorway are two large display cases of Indian jewellery. There are large pieces of silverware such as the engraved silver Madras pagoda, two gold vessels for perfumes imitating the lotus flower, a steel vase inlaid with silver, a complete gold and silver chased table service, green and blue enamelled gargoulettes, a large tray supporting a vase of cast gold, chiselled and retouched on the cast iron, turquoise and pearl necklaces closed sometimes by a gold butterfly with outstretched wings, sometimes by a topaz ibis; rosaries (blunpakalié) in rupees, in local coins; a host of small idols, of real or fantastic animals; finally, foot rings in solid silver, bracelets in gold enamelled blue and engraved; garlands plaited with betel nuts, nutmeg, and mixed with precious stones; earrings, rings, brow stars, pandelic diadems in lapis lazuli, sapphires, pearls, and gold, etc.

A box next to it is filled with very curious arms from Bombay, Delhi, Pegu, Madras, etc. The aisle in front of these arms contains, on the left, samples of the ordinary pottery and utensils of the Indians; on the right, boxes and objects adorned with shells, baskets and other works made of porcupine stings, and a singular lamp, decorated with peacocks. The centre of this exhibition is occupied by a princely slow-walk with all the accessories of Oriental luxury. The pavilion opposite contains beautiful chess boards, sandalwood boxes, ivory and marquetry boxes of great beauty and perfection. Around the centre are wooden furniture of all kinds, tiger skins and others animating mats, etc.

©Promenades dans l'exposition de 1855