Redheads! I love the images of Psyche and Cupid, c.1700s to 1800s. A myriad of messages among the old French portraits of the 2, and this one is just charming! Psyche takes away Cupid's bow with one hand and his arrows with the other, a slight knowing smile on her face. Cupid, wings folded, stretches to reach for them, and the 'trouble' is at a stalemate. This depiction means love is too much trouble, or bother, and definitely a cessation is required. We can't know for whom this was created, nor if a gift or a consolation. I don't often find Cupid as a little redhead, either. I love this image. It remains perfectly preserved beneath the original cover glass, very slightly convex and showing a couple of (oddly) interior flashing chips. The snuff box is a table snuff, over 3" diameter, and is dark chocolate colored tortoise shell with a little cognac here or there. Pique work in silver and probably 18k gold. I have not tested, but it does seem like these opulently crafted old ones almost always are - they were only made for the class of people who could easily afford such things and showing signs of status was an avid pastime among the idle end of society. I'd date it, from experience and decades in museums, mid-1700s.
Very good to excellent condition for age and type. It is not perfect, however. I mentioned the outer inside rim of the cover glass shows tiny flashing chips - there are 3 in all. In my enlargements, you'll see them far more clearly than you will with the box in your collection. A very small few of the pique dots or stars (stars and moons) including a few on the box's perimeter and bottom, which are mother of pearl rather than silver. I have not taken the gold mounted painting out of its place, not wanting to disrupt anything further. I can see that it has been dropped at some point, perhaps twice. The photos show you a very ancient silver band on inside of rim, one side of the lid, which is the restoration for a break there. It appears on the outside as a hairline. Opposite it, rim of lid, is a bug bite which seems also to have a very small tight hairline near or through it. Stable, all, and displays beautifully, but bears mention - careful with this very old one!
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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