These are always fun, always popular and tougher to come by recently. This 19th century Grand Tour souvenir from France shows you why. A typical little desk stand, it has a covered original inkwell in swirled glass made popular by Baccarat, but also the pocket watch hook up on the rear mast, and the open "boat" is a cup into which one would put the contents of pockets at evening. Jewelry and pocket watch, a few coins. These old items were called "vide poche" (literally: empty pocket) in France and they still remain a staple of French homes, usually whimsical and a fun bedside accent. One of three fabulous old Napoleon III era pearl sailboat inkwells that we're adding this week, be sure to browse some while you're with us. Thanks!
The type you see here dates 19th century, and this one is in good form for age and type. The sail is made of a rippled natural shell cut in form of shell, and it's radiant with pearlescent shimmer. A small chip/nip or two is possible and there is some slight bending to the brass or bronze wire masts. The stand and sailboat's body are also natural shells. Mast sports that hook for a pocket watch, as noted. See pictures for all measurements.
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