Large antique repoussé silvered nef in the form of a galleon


This exceptional antique ornamental nef is outstanding both for its large size and extensive detailing, which accurately depicts the ship's many features.


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A nef is a grand table ornament, typically made of precious metal, that takes the form of a ship. This nef mimics the manner of a two-masted Galleon, the main-mast carrying three rectangular silvered sheet-metal sails and the fore-mast carrying three rectangular sails in addition to a triangular lateen sail. The structure of the galleon is formed of silvered metal, and the body of the ship is distinguished by a prominent bowspirit, a tall quarter gallery at the rear, and an ornamental mounted beak on the prow. The hull of the ship is set on wheels.

The silvered metal is ornamented throughout with repoussé to create low relief scenes, as seen on the medallions along the sides of the hull. Silver ornaments are mounted on the sides of the quarter gallery and along the gallery at the front of the ship. Silver figures and cannons populate the deck.

The silvered metal features a patina in shades of yellow and burnt red, particularly evident on the ship’s sails.


Country of Origin
Date of Manufacture
19th Century
19th Century
Marine / Seascape
Metal, Silver
Gold, Silver


70 cm / 27.6 inches
67 cm / 26.4 inches
23 cm / 9.1 inches


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