Goblet - Styles and Influences
Goblet in the Shape of a Nautilus Shell
Nuremberg; 2nd half 16th c.
The name of the goblet came from its shape. Though stylized, with a spout on one side and a knobby ending on the other, it is shaped like the shell of the nautilus which lives in the Indian ocean. In the 16th c. the nautilus shell was considered very precious because of its rarity, so goldsmiths incorporated it in luxuriously shaped silver frames that decorated the treasuries, so called Schatzkammer, of European rulers. A special group of decorative goblets made an appearance in the 2nd half of the 16th c. and their common feature was to have a bowl shaped like a stylized nautilus.