Near-perfect little banded agate specimen box dates c.1840-1900. Thin panels of natural semi-transparent old agate in the best agate to white coloration, 5 panels are perfectly preserved, (the 6th with a nod to the one small chip to the lid panel corner) and so are the 4 ball feet. Displays beautifully, the appeal is high on this one. We recently listed a rare larger one that is 5", shown with this petit one in our final photo. If you're a collector, ask to see that one or look for it, too. The tiniest nip, and it shows so well you'll have a hard time seeing it. We've seen these old agate specimen boxes listed as being French, Russian and Austrian. There does seem to be a lot of misunderstanding about them. The Germans say these are from the agate-rich area Idar - Oberstein, and that they are 19th century Grand Tour and science or "curiosity Cabinet" items that were immensely popular and are entirely hand crafted. We know they've got massive visual appeal, and are thin hand-sawn and polished natural stone showing the light so beautifully through them, they rise to almost gem-like objects of jewelry. This one is set with pristine panels of banded agate, all 9 stones in superb condition Some say this smaller to medium size was sold as a snuff box, but most agree they were meant to be objects of art, admiration and of nature. We have several in stock, including the rich amber-colored banded agate that is my favorite. Be sure to search for them all, each sold separately. We have them from very small to oversized, and a tabletop collection of them is magnificent.
Very good condition throughout. Rich coloration, superb thin beveled slabs of hand-cut semi-precious banded agate. Light thrills through it in display. We did nothing to the fore bronze framework, it's just that brilliant still. There is one small flashing chip to the rear left corner of the lid panel, visible in our photos but hard to see in person. A precious "cabinet des curiosities" item for the King Louis XVI to Napoleon era elite, few of these survive in such fine condition as this. Don't miss it. The box is petit, just 2.5" long. Other measurements noted on the photos.
Our photos are large and clear. We do expect our customers to review them all, evaluate the item based on both our description and our images. Thanks for all the compliments - we love what we do! Antiques & Uncommon Treasure - all the best, all the time.
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Antique French sterling silver, Georgian jewelry, sewing, Black Forest, etc 17th to 19th c. European
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