We love these little pieces, which carefully replicate their larger counter parts. This handsome miniature dates from 1890-1900 and comes from Paris.
Miniatures were very popular during this period amongst doll collectors. This piece would have been used in a doll vignette (the little lady could hide her treasures in the secret box interior) or with a doll house. Doll collecting was at it's height in the 1880-1900 period and many items were produced to delight the collector.
The box was cast from metal ("laiton" in French). The mold carefully replicated all the detailing of a full sized piece of furniture. The "lid" has a raised center panel with a frieze of leaves and a central flower. Four rosettes are placed on top of each curved corner. There is a large medallion at the center front, framed by acanthus leaves and rosettes. The side panels each have a laurel wreath in the shape of a harp. The back panel replicates the front with a large medallion. The legs have lovely upturned feet and and large rings at the top (which represent bronze ormolu). The bottom of the box reads "Depose 11, which is a patent mark.
The interior of the box is lined (lid and four sides) with red felt. A silk braid is placed at the inside top. The bottom has a beige wool "pillow".
The box is in solid condition, with the lid opening and closing nicely. It sits level on the table. There is darkening to the metal as is normal with age. The back right leg has an ancient restoration, but this is very well done and is only slightly noticeable.
It is a tall piece and is heavy for it's size. It measures:7 1/2" tall (to top center), 4 1/2" wide at bottom front, 3" deep from front to back. The inside measures: 1 1/2" deep.
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Unique antique and vintage French pieces. Layaways always welcome!