Leather Bottle or Costrel 

English, 1725-50

You can tell this comes from an English collection -- it's been waxed consistently, so the surface is just about perfect -- mellow, glowing but not too shiny.


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Leather Bottell 

English, 17th c.

This form is widely but wrongly known as a "costrel" because its primary use was not for carrying liquor but for drinking it, in the tavern or in the fields. It is, then, a bottle (bottel or bottell in its day), the drinking vessel of choice for laborers and artisans. Now really rare: bottells could not be coated inside with tar like blackjacks so the leather dried and began leaking comparatively quickly. This one has a wonderfully aged surface - a joy to see and to handle. (Final image: bottle from the Mary Rose, sunk 1545)


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Communion Chalice Case 

English or Dutch, c.1550

It's one of those things -- I saw it and I had to have it: I'd never get a shot at another! Its proportions are pure Gothic. The leather is worn in all the right places, the surface is old and tactile, it's lined insidewith very soft leather. The form of the chalice it held dates it accurately, and there's a place under it for the paten that held the wafers. It was probably used to give communion to those who were too sick or feeble to come to the church.


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Shot Flask 

English, 17th century

A wonderful, early shot flask, straight from an English private collection. The leather is just as you want it -- old, stiff, patinated and characterful (just like me.)


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Leather Clad Document Box 

N. Europe, 1650-1700

Charming little box in as-found conditon -- the leather worn, torn and crackled -- just as we like to see it. Brass nails holding leather and forming initials IB on lid.


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