Viking Punch Bowl

Maker: Tiffany & Co. (1837–present)

Designer: Designed by Paulding Farnham (1859–1927)

Date: ca. 1893

Geography: Made in New York, New York, United States

Culture: American

Medium: Iron, silver, gold, and streaked ebony

Dimensions: Overall: 16 11/16 x 20 1/4 in. (42.4 x 51.4 cm); 449 oz. 19 dwt. (15550 g)
Base: 6 3/8 x 12 3/8 in. (16.2 x 31.4 cm); 149 oz. 4 dwt. (4640 g)
Punch Bowl: 11 1/2 x 20 1/4 in. (29.2 x 51.4 cm); 350 oz. 15 dwt. (10910 g)
Foot: Diam. 8 7/8 in. (22.5 cm)

Classification: Silver

Credit Line: Purchase, The Edgar J. Kaufmann Foundation Gift, 1969

Accession Number: 69.4a, b


After the Magnolia Vase, the most impressive metal object exhibited by Tiffany & Company at the Chicago World's Columbian Exposition of 1893 was this punchbowl, an epic example of the late nineteenth-century fascination with civilizations of the past. The Tiffany exposition catalogue described the eight forms at the top of the bowl as "suggested by the prow of the Norseman's boat." The body of the bowl is fashioned of decarbonized iron, inlaid with silver and gold and displayed on a calamander wood base. Representing the Viking Revival taste, the piece was ornamented with such Norse mythological creatures as the wolves' heads that appear on the handles. Its overall heft and boldness were intended to symbolize the strength of the Vikings. The designer, Paulding Farnham (1859–1927), also designed the Museum's Adams Vase (04.1).