Exquisite pieces from Imperial India on sale at Sotheby`s

Updated: Oct 03, 2013, 12:04 PM IST

London: A sword of Tipu Sultan, a bejewelled gold tray from the Mughal era, a miniature painting of Lord Rama and Sita are among the precious objects that will go under the hammer at Sotheby`s first-ever auction of Imperial India collection here Oct 9.

Over 90 ‘Art of Imperial India’ pieces are on display, and include objects related to Tipu Sultan, then ruler of the Mysore who was also known as the Tiger of Mysore; jewelled treasures from the courts of India; and rare miniatures and paintings - encompassing almost 500 years of every kind of decorative art produced in the region, said a statement Wednesday.

One of the highlights of the sale is Tipu Sultan`s sword fitted with a captured English blade. It has a decorated personal emblem of the ruler, the `bubri`, or tiger-stripe motif engraved on it. It is estimated to fetch 80,000 pounds to 120,000 pounds.

An 18th century diamond set, an enamelled gold tray and casket from the Mughal courts are also on display.

These artefacts were not only used for personal ornamentation, but served an important diplomatic purpose to impress and reinforce the power of their Empire. Their price ranges between 200,000 pounds and 300,000 pounds.

A gem-set gold dagger from 17th century too is on offer. This dagger, overlaid with gold and set with rubies, emeralds and turquoise is estimated at 80,000 pounds to 120,000.

Another coveted piece comes from late Pahari paintings. This monumental work depicts Lord Rama and Sita enthroned, adored by gods, semi-divine beings, ascetics and mortals. Its estimated price is 100,000 pounds to 150,000 pounds.