Large antique mid 19th century French gilt bronze jewelry casket, richly decorated throughout with fine enameling, circa 1860's. This box here is gorgeous, featuring five enamel on convex copper panels in a rare periwinkle blue color. Embellished further by elaborate gilt painted arabesque patterns, trimmed in black and bejeweled. Decorating the edges are a multitude of glimmering red and green enameled accents as well as raised enameled opalescent dots or 'jewels' compiled to resemble petite flowers. The lid features a charming vignette of a pair of bees nestled among flower covered boughs of cherry blossoms.
This magnificent enamelwork is extremely difficult to accomplish in the art of kiln-fired enamel, and the quality presented here is indeed done by the hand of a true master enamellist. This style of work was typical of the enamellist's residing in the Sevres region of France, similar in quality to those by Limoges and Bresse artisans. Not to be confused with the renown porcelain house, the enameling exhibits some of the popular characteristics reminiscent of Sevres porcelains: the enamelwork is found in brighter colors particularly shades of blues in Celeste/turquoise or cobalt, yellow and Pompadour pink; and bejeweled with raised enameled dots.
The box rests on four decorative bun feet and the lid opens to reveal a silk lined tufted interior, which is in very good condition considering it's age. Dimensions (including feet) 8 3/4" length x 5 5/8" width x 4" tall. Has a lock but is lacking a key. The lock plate is signed Castelmuro Marseille. In overall very good condition. The enamel is superb, without damage, chips, cracks or hairlines found. The jewels are intact. Only one tiny white dot missing from the right-hand side of the front panel, this is unnoticeable and hidden amongst the rest of the jewels.
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