Name of Object:

Candlestick base


Glasgow, Scotland, United Kingdom

Holding Museum:

Burrell Collection, Glasgow Museums

 About Burrell Collection, Glasgow Museums, Glasgow

Date of Object:

Hegira 8th century / AD 14th century

Museum Inventory Number:

BC 33.193

Material(s) / Technique(s):

Cast brass, with silver and niello inlay.


Height 26 cm, diameter (of base) 22.8 cm

Period / Dynasty:





A cast brass, inlaid candlestick of truncated conical form; it has bevelled ridges on both the upper and lower rims. The body is dominated by a central band of naskhi script divided into three sections. The sections are separated by three roundels containing Mamluk heraldic emblems, the style dating to the AH 8th / AD 14th century. The main decorative fields are embellished with fine floral scrolls inlaid with silver; a black niello substance is used as inlay to fill in the background of the floral patterns, thus emphasising the fine details of the scrolls. The inscription describes the patron who commissioned the candlestick. Many such candlesticks would have been presented for use in mosques, shrines and religious schools in Egypt. The Mamluk rulers of Egypt and Syria became great patrons of art and architecture. Cairo was their capital, which they ruled from AH 647 / AD 1250 to AH 922 / AD 1517.

View Short Description

This candlestick was made for presentation to a mosque or madrasa, and is decorated with the titles of the Mamluk patron who commissioned it, stating: 'by the most noble authority, lofty, lordly, great; the kingly, supportive, … provider of protection; the masterful, maintainer, prince al-Nassiri'.

How date and origin were established:

Stylistic analysis, together with analysis of the titles described in the inlaid scripts and the Mamluk heraldic emblem.

How Object was obtained:

Part of the collection given to the City of Glasgow by Sir William and Lady Burrell in 1944.

How provenance was established:

Analysis of the Mamluk heraldic emblem and inlaid scripts.

Selected bibliography:

Brend, B., Islamic Art , London, 1991.

Jones, D., and Michell, G., (ed.), The Arts of Islam , exhibition catalogue, London, 1976.

Ward, R., Islamic Metalwork, London, 1993.

Citation of this web page:

Noorah Al-Gailani "Candlestick base" in Discover Islamic Art, Museum With No Frontiers, 2020.;ISL;uk;Mus04;15;en

Prepared by: Noorah Al-Gailani
Copyedited by: Mandi Gomez

MWNF Working Number: UK4 21