In her powdered wig, pearl combs holding the sides and ringlets dropping to the back, this young beauty would have lived in mid-late 1700s. Her expressive blue eyes and soulful seductive look adds to the story of her state of dress (or undress). Yes, she's a "naughty", with her one breast peeking above her very informal gown. A nightgown, more likely, and a little drape of shawl, she seems about to disrobe after some elegant ball, doesn't she. Lovers in that time were inclined to have a portrait like this done of their amour, or even in the case of a rare union, of their bride. Of course in that time most marriages were arranged for political or monetary gain for families, and very often the love came outside and apart from the marriage. It was the way society behaved. A time of billet-doux, intrigue, trysts, and grand ball social events. We can only have a peek, not know who she really was. And then wonder if she lost that pretty head during The Terror, along with Marie-Antoiette, whose style she favors. Fine old c.1700s tortoise shell snuff box.
Very good to excellent condition for age and type, the portrait miniature is beautifully crafted, and has a shadow of a signature there off her shoulder to the right of screen, but I can't begin to make it out. Her portrait is protected by the original convex cover glass, and I must apologize for the dust my lights and digital camera caught. They show as tiny white dots, but in fact the glass is clear, very fine. The snuff box is in very nice condition, a couple of small bug bites on the outer rim, but displays beautifully. Shell liner/body, all intact, with one roughness on a spot of inner rim, lid (shown in detail along with bug bite in our images). The box is 3 3/8" in diameter. SO much detail and personality in that tiny painting!
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.
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