Metal & Stone

At the age of 10, Chester Beatty is said to have outbid others at a public auction to secure a piece of pink calcite for his growing mineral collection. This childhood interest is credited with guiding Beatty towards his profession as a mining specialist, but it also remained important to him as a collector. Today, a dazzling array of precious and semi-precious stones can be found within Beatty’s vast Chinese snuff bottle collection. Lustrous metals and gems also grace the covers of books, in particular the so-called treasure bindings.

Brass pencase with fitted inkwell
1750-1850
Turkey
CBL Is Ca2

Highlights

  • List
  • Grid
  • Slideshow
  • Treasure binding
    17th century
    Greater Armenia
    CBL Arm 584

    1 / 9

  • Snuff bottle of pale brown and opaque white banded agate
    1800-1880
    China
    CBL C 0628

    2 / 9

  • Serpentine stone book-rest
    1800-1850
    Punjab (Pakistan)
    CBL Is X6

    3 / 9

  • Ordination text
    18th or 19th century
    Burma
    CBL Bu 1234

    4 / 9

  • Discussion of carriage with a league recording drum (Yubi ji liguche shuo)
    1778
    China
    CBL C 1005

    5 / 9

  • Cloissonné enamelled triptych with Virgin and Child and St Nicholas
    c. 1800
    Russia
    CBL WX 23

    6 / 9

  • Bronze 12 nummias of Justinian or Jusstin II and Maurice
    527-602
    Alexandria (Egypt)
    CBL Cpt 815.5

    7 / 9

  • Brass pencase with fitted inkwell
    Turkey
    1750-1850
    CBL Is Ca2

    8 / 9

  • Brass astrolabe
    1733-1766
    Isfahan (Iran)
    CBL Is Sc6

    9 / 9

Open today 10am–5pm

Monday to Friday 10am–5pm
Saturday 11am–5pm
Sunday 1pm–5pm


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**Closed 1 Jan; Good Friday; 24-26 Dec & Monday Public Holidays.**

Admission is free
Suggested donation €5

Map

Chester Beatty
Dublin Castle
Dublin 2
D02 AD92