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Casket of cetacean bone with bronze mountings, decorated with Celtic interlaced designs on its twenty two panels, long preserved in Eglinton Castle, Ayrshire

Museum reference

H.UD 10

Object name


Production information

Scotland, Northern Europe


15th - early 16th century


Whalebone, Metal

Physical description

Studs are missing from the metal straps above three of the hinges, two have been crudely repaired with metal patches; two studs are missing from the bottom of the straps on the back; the bottom two fleurons are broken off the lock and the end is missing from one of the hasps; a metal strip is lost from underneath the casket; there are long cracks in the whalebone half-way across the lid and from side to side of the front. There is a small blob of brown paint (?) on the lid.


Eglinton Castle, Kilwinning, Ayrshire, Scotland, Northern Europe


  • Fonn's Duthchas: Land and Legacy (13 Jan 2007 - 01 Dec 2007)
    Highland Museums, Inverness Museum and Art Gallery
    Kelvingrove Museum and Art Gallery
    National Museums of Scotland
    Museum nan Eilean

  • Angels, Nobles and Unicorns: Art and Patronage in Medieval Scotland (12 Aug 1982 - 26 Sep 1982)
    Royal Museum of Scotland


Glenn, Virginia, Romanesque & Gothic: Decorative Metalwork and Ivory Carvings in the Museum of Scotland, NMSE Publishing, Edinburgh, 2003

Caldwell, D.H. (ed). Angels Nobles and Unicorns: Art and Patronage in Medieval Scotland. Edinburgh: NMS, 1982

On display

national museum of scotland »
level 1 »
scotland galleries »
kingdom of the scots »
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