Set of seven bronze "opium" weights. Burmese, 19th century - Kate Thurlow | Tony Bunzl

Set of seven bronze "opium" weights. Burmese, 19th century

£240.00






A set of seven patinated bronze weights in the form of crested ducks, each slightly different from the other and of varying sizes and weights, each with incised decoration.  Burmese, late 19th century.

Originally the weights were used to weigh high-valued products such as silver ingots.  They were not only for trading but also had religious connotations representing the powers of the divine spirit in heaven and the earthly god-king.

The description "opium weight" was first used in the late 19th or early 20th century but the history is much older dating back to 100 AD.  Animal and bird shaped weights appeared around the 15th century in the Burmese Empire.

HEIGHT of largest

3 in. (7.5 cm)

WIDTH:

10.6 in. (4.5 cm)

DEPTH:

1 3/8 in. (3.4 cm)

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