Marie-Antoinette's favorite decorative technique was this one, a layering of paint and varnish invented by the Brothers Martin, and known through history simply as "Vernis Martin". This large table snuff, or perhaps vanity or confections box is an example, and you can see the incredible decorative result, a painting in miniature, colors still vibrant (the later copies, which are themselves antiques, often darken and lose the vibrance - they say no one has been able to fully recreate the technique used in mid-1700s). The figures are splendid, in motion of flight, they approach the bound sentry or soldier. I'm sure this scene must come from another full-sized painting, but it does not come to mind immediately for me - I'm getting old, you know. Full measurements noted on our photos.
Very good to excellent condition for age and type - this is 18th century. The box's interior is a wonderful mottled cognac to chocolate tortoise shell, the inner lip of which has 2 chips as you can see. Rubs to the outer edges from the passage of time and from use. There are no breaks nor chips to the body of the box, however, apart from the inner tortoise shell lip. A larger than usual box for its time, table snuff or perhaps a confections presentation box, powder box originally.
IMPORTANT NOTE regarding antique tortoise shell or ivory: We are great supporters of protection for endangered species in our modern world. We never buy or sell anything 100 years or newer; we donate to anti-poaching organizations; we don't hunt; we conserve in ways that impact global warming (we're totally solar at home), knowing those measures also protect the animals in the wild today. We also recognize the vast cultural history we preserve with our care and reverence for these antique objects, and agree with CITES that objects over 100 years of age have nothing whatsoever to do with species depletion in our current world.
Our offering exceeds the age limitation of "more than 100 years of age", and is well within the exemption for CITES regulation. If imported, met the CITES regulation. This item will be handled and shipped from our Utah business, and is not available for shipment internationally, nor within the USA to California, NY, Nevada, Hawaii, New Jersey, Oregon, Washington if it contains ivory, sorry. Please see our small print for more details.