These wonderful old early 1800s French caskets are fascinating, and becoming more and more rare. This one is rather large for the style. The French did not just use tortoise shell as veneers, or in boulle worked boxes, but also in this form, thin panels worked by themselves into the brass framework so the light could fully play through the colorful old shell. Relatively thin, it is a fragile style and most have some aging and shrinkage hairlines or outright breaks in the shell. Still, they are gorgeous, popular, and more and more impossible to find. Listing several just now from our old inventory. Only available from our Utah location*.
This is a larger jewelry casket. These were sold through boutiques in the Opera section of Paris, often filled with confections and purchased for events at the Palais Royal with the idea that the casket would be a souvenir. The earliest references in museums I've found dated as c.1810-50. This one is 5" x 4" and quite well intact. It has a working lock, but I don't have a key at listing time. Lots of view of it. It's a beauty, to be sure. the hinged top handle lifts up, though our photographer neglected to get a shot that way.
Very good to excellent for age and type, and we've shown it from all angles so you can evaluate any small imperfections in the steam-formed natural shell. Working lock, no key at listing time. If we locate one, we'll annotate listing and raise price a bit. Look how nice the old original cream silk lining is, and bottom also is nicely preserved. Measurements noted on the images.
*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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