Rare Vienna Bronze Of "Stockim Eisen" Nail Tree Artist Signed. This is a very interesting antique vienna bronze of "Stockim Eisen" a famous tree from 1400's that has nails hammered into it. The tree is a rare antiquity that is currently on display since at least 1548, the tree is now located safely behind glass on a corner of the magnificent Palais Equitable at the corner of the Graben and Karntner Strasse in Vienna. This piece was probably an art souvenir c.1900 sold in Vienna. The bronze is finely detailed artist signed S. Chiger and titled Stockim Eisen. Bronze measures 4 3/8" high by 1" wide, Excellent Condition Stock im Eisen means “staff in iron” in German, and is the oldest known example of the tradition. These types of Nagelbaum or “nail trees” were common throughout southeastern Europe in the middle ages. The reasons behind them are not totally clear. It is thought that the practice of sacrificing what would have at the time a fairly valuable item, nails, was done as an act of thanks or in hopes of good luck. The nails trees of Europe inspired a similar practice during WWI of creating patriotic “Nail Men” as fundraising projects and acts of national pride. Research in the 1970s dated the spruce tree approx 1400, with the first nails driven in while it was still alive. It was cut down around 40 years later. The section now on display is about 7 feet tall, and is accompanied by decorative panels illustrating the history of the nagelbaum.