This is an old, hand-carved burl wood Tibetan tea cup, with
absolutely fine burl grain patterning. Nice older cups like this
are getting harder and harder to find, and of course more
expensive too. Despite its age, this cup is in great condition.
An outstanding specimen, both in terms of craftsmanship and the
wood itself. It has beautiful patina and is in very good
condition. In Tibet and the Buddhist Himalaya, these burl wood
cups are highly valued, and in fact have some very special, even
magical, powers attributed to them. The cups are considered
medicinal and it was traditionally believed that if a person is
served poison, drinking from a special burl wood cup will
neutralize the toxins, or that the cup would even split or
shatter. (But don't try that at home). The traditional lore
recounts that in order to find the right wood the master carver
would go out on a moonless, dark night and enter the forest. If
everything was in order, then by some supernatural means, the
craftsmen would spot an effulgent light around the proper tree,
and the next day he could dig there, harvesting some "dza" or
burl wood for making the cup.
Well, magical antidote for poison or not,
they are beautiful and this particular cup is a fine specimen.
It would be a fine addition to your Himalayan antique
collection, and by the way, it remains fully functional. You can
use it to drink from if you feel so inclined!
19th to early 20th c.
||4˝ " diameter
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