Antony Master turns his house into a museum of antiques worth crores
Thrissur: ‘Summer Snow’, the house of Antony Master at Mattom is nothing short of a museum. Stone sculptures in various sizes and shapes are displayed between the plants in his courtyard. Beautiful stone lamps which are usually found in temples are another attraction of his courtyard.
When we enter his house, magnificent antique pieces will welcome us.
Antony Chittattukkara, a retired school teacher holds a collection of antique pieces worth crores of rupees. Interestingly, he has been collecting these antique pieces since 1962.
Now, at the age of 80, he is planning to hand over his collection to the archaeological department. The assessment of the items by the department was interrupted due to COVID-19.
Holy Bible, which is believed to be recovered from the banks of Nile river, Papyrus scroll (dead sea scrolls) of Old Testament written in Hebrew, iron sword used by executioner during the reign of Sakthan Thampuran, Iron cannon of Tippu Sultan, Chinese Blue Porcelain crockery of Ming dynasty and refrigerator that functions with kerosene are the major items in his collection. Over 10,000 items which mark history, are being preserved in Antony master’s museum.
Most of these items were purchased from scrap dealers and bronze vessel shops at Pattambi and Kuttipuram areas.
Interestingly, he also holds the original copy of O Chandu Menon’s novel ‘Indulekha’ .
Earlier, Antony Master had possessed 13 items used by Mahatma Gandhi. It included 8 letters, spectacles, gramophone which recorded Gandhiji’s speech, foldable spinning wheel and some sand which mixed with Gandhiji’s blood. All these items were sold out in an auction held in London. Though these items had a value of nearly Rs 200 cr, he only received below Rs 1 cr in the auction.
Antony Master retired from Chavakkad Govt. Higher Secondary School. His wife late Mary was a Chemistry professor at Mammiyur LF college. His son Afbee is working in the USA and daughter Anu is settled in Bengaluru.
Antony Master has kept two conditions to the archaeological department officials who came to assess the valuable items. The first one was, his collections should get decent payment and the second one was this rare collection of antique pieces should be popular in his name.
Archaeological department to take over the collection
The Archeological department will take over Antony Master’s collection.
“We have requested the government to take over the collection by making fair payment after assessing the period and archaeological value of each item,” said Sakthan Thampuran palace curator Abdul Hakkim and education officer KV Sreenath.