E & M Perez Ellen and Michael Perez
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Large 19th Century Polished COCO DE MER Seychelles

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Directory: Archives: Decorative Art: Pre 1900: item # 1176708

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E & M Perez
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Large 19th Century Polished COCO DE MER Seychelles
The largest seed pod in the world, the Coco de Mer (Lodoicea Maldivia) is found only on two islands in the Seychelles, though originally grew on the other three islands of this chain as well. It has been a natural history treasure since first discovered during the Renaissance, originally by mariners, who believed that it grew on mysterious trees under the sea and the pods floated to the surface when ripe. Now very rare, the seeds are protected and very few are available for sale. This example was cut and made into a container, as was the case with many in past centuries, sometime enhanced with silver, gold, gems and elaborate engraving. Of particularly large size, this one measures 14" x 11" x 5" and has a glossy, dark and polished patina, with one side of a slightly lighter and somewhat mottled color, and is clearly an antique specimen. The hinges are brass, with what appear to be hand-made screws. The form is striking and dramatic, a naturally formed sculpture that is intriguing and evocative.


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