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Antique French Sterling Silver Mounted Bodkin Case or Smallish Billet-Doux, Wood
This item is a bit of a mystery. It is likely an old bodkin or lace needles case, but it might also be that it was a billet-doux or case/etui for notes and communication, perhaps the smaller size would have been more functional for military communication, and less decorative case would have served beautifully for such, with rolled up noted inside. There is a tiny French silver mark there on the one end piece, and I will get our photographer to use his microscope camera to capture it the best we can, but you can see it in our images (I'll mark it). The body of the case is beautiful old wood and that silver is rich against it.
Very good condition for age and type. I bought a pair of this size cases, etui from the same collection, and am unsure if they are smallish billet doux or if they are bodkin cases - one or the other. Nicely crafted in beautiful old wood with hallmarked French silver mounts, fully intact. Very light hairline toward one end, drying or age related. The interior 'collar' has been coated with some cork at some point in time, I suppose to keep the fit nice and tight. Photos show it all well for your review. Measurements on photos, too.
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San Marcos, CA
Antique French sterling silver, Georgian jewelry, sewing, Black Forest, etc 17th to 19th c. European
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