Maharaja Ranjit Singh’s golden quiver to be auctioned in London

London, October 11: A gold-thread-embroidered, velvet-clad leather bow and arrow holder made for Maharaja Ranjit Singh leads a set of Indian treasures to go under the hammer in London later this month.

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The exquisite quiver, believed to have been made for ceremonial purposes rather than to be used in battle by the Sikh emperor – known as the Lion of Punjab – is estimated to fetch between 80,000 pounds and 120,000 pounds when it comes up for auction at the Bonhams Islamic and Indian Art sale on October 23.

“This is a wonderful piece from the fabled Treasury of Lahore, and the circumstantial evidence points to it being the one made in 1838 for Ranjit Singh, the state’s greatest and most famous leader,” said Oliver White, Bonhams Head of Indian and Islamic Art.

It is believed that the Maharaja commissioned a quiver in 1838 to wear at the wedding of his eldest son and heir, Kharak, and he appears to be wearing the one in the sale – or one extremely similar to it – in a painting of the same year by the French artist Alfred de Dreaux, now in the Louvre Museum in Paris, the auction house said.