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Silver Boxes and Vinaigrettes
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Irish Silver Freedom Box - Londonderry   
Benjamin Stokes, Dublin C 1760

A rare Irish silver Freedom Box, engraved with the coat of arms of the city of Londonderry, in Northern Ireland. Freedom boxes are typically Irish, and were used as presentation pieces to distinguished non- residents who received the honorary freedom of the city (Bennett, Collecting Irish Silver). Example from Dublin, Youghal, Limerick and Cork are known (Bennett), Londonderry is rare. The coat of arms includes a skeleton sitting on a hill, with a turreted castle, and the George Cross and dagger of London above. The skeleton is thought to represent starvation during the great siege. The city motto "Vita Veritas Victoria" (Life, Truth, Victory) is engraved below. The engraving quality is superb, with delicate flowers and chased C scrolls. The decorated lid is a separate panel that has been set into a presumably plain table snuff box. The box has a curved thumbpull for easy opening, and is gilded interior and exterior, with exception of the base. The only hallmarks present are the makers mark (struck twice, on ...

Victorian Silver and Enamel Malta Blue Stamp Vesta Case - Twopence Halfpenny
Usher Manufacturing Co (Charles Usher) - possibly, Birmingham 1890
$ 3 250.00

A rare and interesting Victorian silver vesta case, with an enamelled Malta Blue twopence halfpenny stamp, used between 1885 and 1890. The vesta itself is rectangular in shape, with striker in base, and silver ring attachment (for attachment to Albert chain). The vesta is hallmarked in the usual place, along the inside top rim, with Lion Passant, anchor, date letter P (only in use from May to July 1890, after the duty mark was retired), and partial makers mark C. in shield punch, possibly Charles Usher of Usher Manufacturing Company. This vesta previously sold at Sotheby's London in 1988, their description stated "very rare, the only example we have seen", they also described the "superb enamelled representation of the Malta 1885-90 2&half d blue".

Antique Silver Gilt Snuff Box - Thomas Shaw, Thomas Ogilvy, Francis Philips   
Thomas Shaw, Birmingham 1828

A magnificent silver gilt snuffbox with a superb finely detailed battle scene. The gilding on the battle scene has different tones, the base has a deeper rich red tinge, this fades to a lighter yellow gold colour in the sky. The box is exceptional quality and a pleasing weight. The sides and rim are richly decorated with cast flowers and thistles, which leads us to believe it is possibly a Scottish battle scene (we welcome opinions!). The battle is being fought with swords, battleaxes, lances, shields, armour and horses, no sign of firearms. The detail includes a castle in the background, flags, finely detailed armour and armorials on the shield - the work of a master craftsman. The base is engine turned, and has a blank cartouche. The interior lid is engraved "Presented to Thomas Ogilvy Esqr, by the New Quay Company of Manchester, as a mark of their gratitude, for his great attention & trouble as arbiter, in the investigation of the disputed claim, made on them by Messrs Francis Philips & Sons, 1829". The en...

Scottish Silver Box - Archers Hall.   
Brook & Son, Edinburgh 1902

A lovely commemorative Scottish silver box, beautifully engraved on the lid with 3 different armorials. The sides of the box are decorated with an attractive flower, leaf and bow design, and the interior is silver gilt. The inscription reads "From Friends at Archers Hall to Charles Stewart, Match Secretary, 1891-1901, 22nd October 1901." Archers Hall was built in 1777 for the Royal Company of Archers, the oldest surviving company of longbowmen in Britain. Today a private club, they provide the bodyguard for the sovereign in Scotland (ceremonial today). Members must be Scottish, and are drawn from politicians, military officers and nobility. They compete annually for the "Edinburgh Arrow". The central coat of arms, with motto "Nobilis Ira" (Noble Wrath), has the shield topped with Peers helmet and demi lion rampant. This is the coat of arms of the Stewarts. The armorial to the left is the Royal coat of arms as used in Scotland, but unusually with the English motto "Dieu et Mon Droit" (God and my Right). The 3...

Castle-top Card Case - Royal Exchange - Nathaniel Mills   
Nathaniel Mills, Birmingham 1845

A collectable silver Castle-Top card case, depicting the Royal Exchange in high relief, by the famous Nathaniel Mills. This castle-top is very fine quality, the relief design stands out 1 cm from the case, and the detail is superb.The case is finely chased with flowers, leaves and C scrolls, and the rear cartouche is monogrammed MRI. The cartouche is a old replacement - a new cartouche has been cut out and added, to accommodate the initials of a new owner. This has been well done and does not detract. The Royal Exchange is situated in London next to the Bank of England. It was opened for trading by Queen Victoria in 1845, this case was probably made to commemorate the opening. The Royal Exchange still exists today, but is now a luxury shopping centre. The hallmarks and makers marks are clear

Castle-Top Card Case - Windsor Castle, Kenilworth Castle   
John Tongue, Birmingham 1839

A double sided Castle-Top card case, depicting Windsor Castle on one side, and Kenilworth Castle on the other. Both views have very fine detail, and are set on an attractive engine turned background. The Windsor Castle view is of the East Terrace, showing the new garden created for King George IV. The Kenilworth Castle view has a right facing heraldic bear in the left hand foreground, which signify ownership by the Dudley family (Cameron, The First Castle Tops, Silver Society Journal 12, pg 65). The hallmarks are very clear. John Tongue, an established maker of boxes including Castle-Tops, worked between 1831 and 1865.

Georgian Parcel Gilt Silver Purse/ Handbag Vinaigrette - Ledsam & Vale
Ledsam & Vale, Birmingham 1820
$ 1 550.00

An interesting silver gilt Georgian vinaigrette, in the shape of a purse or handbag, the body decorated with chased 3 leaf device, which has been described as a trefoil design in the literature. The shape is lovely, very pleasing to hold, and with the texture has good grip. The quality is excellent, certainly made by a master craftsman. The base has a leaf design around oval eye. The lid is also beautifully decorated, a central flower on finely engraved cross-hatch surrounded by pattern border, and the side of the lid has a fruiting vine border, very delicately chased. The vinaigrette has 2 eyelets which holds the original chain, each chain link is also decorated with a bar pattern. The pierced grille has a foliate design, also engraved, both hinges are perfect. The interior gilding is also perfect. The vinaigrette has clear hallmarks, the lid has Georgian duty mark, very clear makers mark L&Co which is struck upside-down, and lion passant. The base has anchor town mark, partially worn makers mark and a very ...

Austrian Silver Cigarette Case - Kaiser Frederick III, 1488-1888   
Oscar Julius Dietrich, Wien (Vienna) C 1925

An Austrian silver cigarette case, with an interesting commemorative double sided medallion by Lauer of Nuremberg, celebrating a 400 year jubilee (1488-1888), set in the lid. The case is ribbed, and has a gilded interior, and gold thumb piece. The case is fabulous quality, very heavy and beautifully made, the hinge is almost invisible, clearly the work of a master craftsman. The medallion is double sided, it was struck to commemorate Kaiser Frederick III, King of Prussia and German Emperor, who came to the throne in 1888, who is on the back of the medallion, in full armour wearing a crown. Unfortunately he died 99 days later of throat cancer, so it was a short reign. He was a liberal and was married to Princess Victoria, eldest daughter of Queen Victoria, historians have speculated that had he remained on the throne longer the Great War might never had happened.The front of the medallion depicts the Holy Roman Emperor Frederick III (same name) Archduke of Austria and King of Germany, in crown and armour, with...

Victorian Silver Double Lidded Twin Stamp Box
Cohen & Charles, Chester 1900
$ 1 250.00

A rare and unusual Victorian silver double lidded twin stamp box, one of the most practical designs we have seen on a stamp box. The box is rectangular, and is good quality, a pleasing weight, with gilded interior with 2 sloped compartments, and twin lids on separate hinges. The lids have separate silver frames which hold the glass in place covering the representative stamp. The box is clearly hallmarked, both lids and both frames are hallmarked as well. Cohen & Charles worked between 1890 and 1974, founded by Albert Cohen and Charles Solomon. They were the sole English agents for the leading French firm of Baudet Freres & Cie, so were a prestigious firm (Culme, Gold & Silversmiths, pg 88).

Georgian Silver Gaming Vinaigrette
John Caney, London 1802
$ 1 250.00

A rare and interesting silver gaming vinaigrette, with a rotating disk with mounted gold arrow that points at a dial with numbers from 1 to 10. The vinaigrette is circular, with 5 sections between each numeral, the rotating disk is engraved with a radiating pattern, which adds grip to allow the disk to be rotated to the desired number. The base of the vinaigrette has an attractive engraved floral arrangement, the sides are decorated with further engraving and prick work bands. The interior grille is plain, but with a pattern of punched holes, as is common on earlier vinaigrettes. The interior is gilded, the base lemon yellow, the lid and grille a slightly darker gold colour, so possibly re-gilded. The hallmarks are clear, on both the base and the lid, the grille has no hallmarks. The hallmarks include makers mark IC in rectangular punch without dot, we have tentatively ascribed to John Caney (Grimwade 1218), as his mark has no dot and he was a small worker of the period (registered 1800). Unfortunately the ...

Rare Cape Silver Vinaigrette - Twentyman   
Lawrence Twentyman, Cape C 1830

An extremely rare Cape Silver vinaigrette, with attractive engraving, a sunburst surrounding a wreath contained in a rectangle on the lid, the base and sides also decorated with naive but attractive zig-zag and dot engraving, typical of colonial Cape silversmiths. The grille is also decorated by hand, with a crude flower and foliage surrounded by hand punched holes in squares. The interior is gilt. Both the lid and base are struck with 3 poorly struck hallmarks, which appear to be the lion passant between 2 castles. However the grille is struck with a very clear LT makers mark, without doubt that of Lawrence Twentyman. The only other known example of a Cape vinaigrette, by Martinus Lourens Smith, appeared at Sothebys Cape Town in February 2007 (Lot 428). None of the Cape silver reference books (Welz, Heller) mention vinaigrettes.

Silver enamel cigarette case - Golfer
S. Blanckensee & Son, Birmingham 1919
$ 1 200.00

A lovely enamel silver cigarette case with a bespectacled golfer swinging a wood, with flag visible behind him. The enamel is very good quality, well painted with lots of detail. The interior is gilt, and both sides of the box are hallmarked with clear marks. Blanckensee & Son was established in 1826, and by the turn of the century they had a large export trade and London showrooms. In the Jewellers exhibition of 1913, Blanckensee had "two of the prettiest windows in the exhibition", which included enamel cigarette cases (Culme, Directory of Silversmiths 1838 - 1914).

Silver enamel cigarette case - Boston Terrier   
J. Thompson & Sons, London 1924

Magnificent enamel silver cigarette case, depicting a Boston Terrier, (brindle with white muzzle) of very good quality. The detail of the enamel is extremely good. The box is engine turned, and has a gilt interior. Both sides of the box are hallmarked with clear marks. John Thompson & Sons, which was formed in the 1860's, still trades as a Jewellers at 20 Rosebury Ave, London.

Castle-top Vinaigrette - Kenilworth Castle, Nathaniel Mills   
Nathaniel Mills, Birmingham 1837

A collectable castle-top vinaigrette depicting Kenilworth castle, by the famous maker Nathaniel Mills. The pierced grill has scrolling foliage, the base is engine turned and engraved "Ernest". The hallmarks are clear, on both lid and base. We previously incorrectly identified this castle as Warwick castle.

Cape Silver Snuffbox
Jacobus Johannes Vos, Cape C 1851
$ 1 050.00

A charming Cape silver snuffbox, retangular in form, and quite small in size. It is decorated with typically Cape engraving, generally a crude series of lines and dots. The cover is quite unusual, having a central shield cartouche (engraved "MMM Le R 1851") surrounded by 2 Scottish thistles - this design is very rare on Cape silver. The surname "Le R" (possibly Le Roux?) is probably French Huguenot in origin, the Scottish thistles are a mystery. The sides of the box have a zig-zag design, the base a blank rectangular design. The interior is gilded, and the base of the interior has an engraved sunburst design. The hallmarks are on the rim of the lid, and consist of makers initials JJV surrounded by 2 acorn devices (Welz mark 159). They are quite small but clear and well struck, but given the location difficult to see. JJ Vos was one of the last 2 surviving Cape Silversmiths, he worked between 1841 and 1882 (Welz).

Cape Silver Snuff Box - Johannes Martinus Lotter, Colonel Frank Shuttleworth, Bedfordshire Yeomanry   
Johannes Martinus Lotter, Cape 1844-1879

A Cape silver snuff box, with an intriguing later inscription with both Bedfordshire and Boer War connections. The snuff box is rectangular with a shell thumb piece, and has typically Cape wriggle work engraving around the sides, which is worn from use. The interior is gilded, and has a later engraved inscription "Frank Pym from Frank Shuttleworth Xmas 1911". The box has a very clear JML makers mark on the lid. The box is well made, has very pleasing snug closure, very suitable for use. Frank Shuttleworth (of Old Warden, Biggleswade) was High Sherriff of Bedfordshire in 1891, he was followed by Francis Pym (of Hassells Hall, Sandy) in 1903. Shuttleworth (Colonel) raised the Bedfordshire Imperial Yeomanry in 1901 for service in the Boer War, we assume he acquired this Cape Silver snuffbox during his service in South Africa, answering the question why a Cape silver snuffbox has a Bedfordshire inscription. The Bedfordshire Yeomanry also served later in both World Wars. The Shuttleworth name today is known due ...

Two Georgian Silver Miniature Vinaigrettes - Joseph Willmore
Joseph Willmore, Birmingham 1813 and 1821
$ 980.00

Two Georgian silver vinaigrettes, both very small in size, and both by Joseph Willmore. They are very attractive and dainty, less than half the size of most vinaigrettes, we love these boxes. The first (1813) is lozenge shaped, the concave base fits beautifully around the thumb, it is a delight to hold. The cover is engraved with flowers and prick work surrounding initials THC, the base has a different floral engraving. The grille is plain, the interior gilding and hallmarks are excellent. including JW makers mark in circular serrated punch, his first mark used between 1797 and 1834. The second (1821) is rectangular with canted corners, the cover engraved with an attractive wavy pattern around a vacant cartouche, the base with an engraved flower. The grille is also plain, the hallmarks are good, on both lid, base and grille. The corners have some oxidation, but it does not detract. Joseph Willmore, who worked between 1797 and 1843, is described by Eric Delieb as "a superlative silversmith, who produced some o...

Art Deco Silver WW1 Cigarette Case - Kuppenheim   
Louis Kuppenheim, Pforzheim C 1918

An interesting Art Deco cigarette case by Louis Kuppenheim of Pforzheim, Germany, regarded as one of Germany's leading Art Deco silversmiths. The case has a lovely ribbed design, and the clasp is set with an attractive dark blue sapphire cabochon. The interior is gilt. The case is extremely good quality, and has a pleasing weight, and is in the higher grade 900 silver. The case is engraved with a fascinating World War 1 inscription "Major J.D.S. Lloyd, OBE, MC, etc. A reminder of pleasant and unpleasant days spent together and appreciation of many little acts of kindness and help during the advance from Ypres - Waterloo 1918, J.C.W." The hallmarks include makers mark LK (in fancy script), the crown and moon of Germany, and 900 fineness mark.

Dutch Silver Lodereindoosje / Vinaigrette - He. Dat Is Lief - Adrianus Kiujlenburg, Schoonhoven
Adrianus Kuijlenburg, Schoonhoven 1816
$ 940.00

An antique Dutch silver gilt vinaigrette (zilveren lodereindoosje) in the form of an armoire (kabinet). These have also been described as pomanders, scent boxes, and also incorrectly described as snuff boxes and peppermint boxes. The box has a curved shaped front, and the back panel has the impressed words "HE. DAT IS LIEF", translated He that is love", so probably presented as a love token. The armoire has frontal doors with floral decoration, and 3 drawers below, the back and side panels also have floral decoration. The lid has an oval panel with seated figure of justice holding sword and scales, surrounded by a wreath. The base is engraved with original owners initials T:V:V, the base also has a clear makers mark of AK under flower (Adrianus Kuijlenburg of Schoonhoven, 1812 -1816, see Nederlands Responsibility Marks since 1797 no 897). The lid has a Minerva head office mark (duty mark), and the box interior rim has the Lion Passant 2nd purity for 833 grade silver and date letter G for 1816. Loderein comes...

Silver Enamel Cigarette Case - Pin-up girl   
W.T. Toghill & Co, Birmingham 1950

A large size enamel silver engine turned cigarette case, depicting a scantily clad 1940's pin-up girl. The interior is gilt, and is engraved "Brian from Mamie 19th December 1950". Hallmarks are clear, including "Made in England", both sides are hallmarked, even the clasp has a .925 hallmark. W.T. Toghill & Co worked between 1927 and 1951.

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