Nef (metalwork)  

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

A nef is an extravagant table ornament and container of precious metals used in the Middle Ages and Renaissance, made in the shape of a ship - nef was an alternative term in French for a carrack. If not just used for decoration, it could hold salt or spices, the latter being very expensive in the Middle Ages, or cutlery, or even napkins. The large nef in the well-known calendar miniature for January from the Très Riches Heures du Duc de Berry is being used to hold, and perhaps wash, gilt dishes from the table service.

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Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Nef (metalwork)" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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