A superb gaming chest from the Napoleon III era (c.1850-70s) and by one of the very best makers, too. The lock plate bears the signature of Alph. Giroux, Paris. That elevates both the history and the value of this elegant box and set, of course, as would it if it bore the name TAHAN, Vervelle, Paul Sormani. Those were perhaps the 4 finest names in such opulent boxes and goods, each attaining highest honors at Expos and each makers to Kings, Emperors, the elite of the era. One can only guess who might have once enjoyed gaming with this set. If only it would tell us its story. We have no provenance to speak of. The set is just in from Paris, however. The gaming chips and the old antique set of playing cards, which are themselves quite valuable, and a game marker are all included with the satin-finish box. The box is, I believe, Rosewood. Stunning fine old wood, inlaid beautifully with top quality stringing and a cartouche to match which has not yet been engraved with a monogram. The lock appears to be a working lock, but we do not have the working key at listing time. If we can locate one among our stash of extras, we'll annotate the listing (and price). The chips are all the old originals. I have not counted them but it is not a full complete set (from experience). The old set of cards is a 19th century sheet-litho printed and colored set that has then been machine-cut. We only rarely see these old ones. I didn't even count to see if it's complete but I think perhaps not quite. The maker is "B P Grimaud", signature on the cards (see images). They date 1890s so a little newer than the old box. Fabulous all together.
Very good condition throughout. No lift or loss to the inlay cartouche nor the stringing. Wood is a satin finish, elegant old grain and is, I believe, Rosewood, a high exotic wood. All of the lift-out chip trays (jetons trays) and the ante are complete though show age and use. The gaming marker is a rather simple one, but it came with the set and will remain. I'm sorry - I sent this to warehouse before counting the playing cards. Will do so and annotate soon. Measurements noted on the photos.
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