The Muslim West
Court Life
Ivory receptacles were gifts of exceptional value.
As well as showing-off their wealth, courtiers also lived an elegant and protocol-led life that included customs such as exchanging lavish gifts with intimate acquaintances, ambassadors and dignitaries from abroad. Symbols of the sovereign's power, such gifts were sometimes used to great effect as propaganda tools, as is evident from the dedications and royal icons that decorate them.
The court's demand for luxury items resulted in the creation of royal workshops and the development of trade in luxury goods in towns.
Ivory box from the Cathedral of Braga

Hegira 394 / AD 1004 and Hegira 398 / AD 1008
Umayyads of Córdoba, Caliphate period
Cathedral of Braga Treasury
Braga, Portugal
Valuable in themselves, these exquisite objects were designed to contain desirable gifts such as jewellery or aromatic substances so valued for cosmetic and grooming purposes.