Monday, 21 October 2013

Schlemmer #2 Baroque

Dresden from the spire of the rebuilt Fraunkirche 
Part of Dresden's Schloss ( I think)


Dresden hit is straps under the patronage of King Augustus I of Saxony who had a huge appetite for the finer things in life and the Baroque period that influenced his reign is well depicted in Dresden’s architecture and cultural collections. 

We booked the necessary tickets to enter into the Old Green Vault (Altes Grunes Gewolbe), the personal treasure rooms (all nine of them) of Augustus the Strong. The Schloss rooms had been restored after the allied bombing in WW2 to the Baroque period. We entered an air-lock, two by two, where dust was taken from around us and our feet were automatically wiped, quite a weird experience. Squeaky clean we entered into the most obscenely rich and indulgent collections. An amber room, ivory room, jewell room, silver room to name a few. Augustus admirably epitomizes the schlemmer approach to life.

Then there was the New Green Vault with even more rare & priceless collections. Sitting peacefully in one cabinet was a Narwhal tusk masquerading as a unicorn horn. Given the penchant to turn most natural materials such as horn, coconut shells, ivory into vessels and then adorn it with precious metals and jewels the Narwhal tusk is surprisingly unadorned,

The stars of the Neues collection was the largest and rarest green diamond, hailing from an Indian Raj and a cherry pip decorated with 185 faces. Just what an over indulged King needs. 

Following pictures from www, one was allowed nothing in the Vaults.

Diamond Room

185 faces-count 'em
And a bit more Dresden:





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