A most unusual item, and one we just couldn't pass by. Found in Paris, this silent butler, or crumb tray and brush are entirely set with cabochons of garnet red and turquoise blue, probably fine glass. The stones or "gems" are placed in a generous array and make the set more like a fine old jewelry item than a tabletop set. We've had numerous frames and small ornamental items made like this over the years, all noted as Hungarian or Czech, or Austrian. We know some were also made by French makers. We think this one is Austrian, however.
Very good to excellent for age and type. The old set has not been polished at all. I though I'd leave that decision to the next owner, and I just didn't want to take any chances of dislodging those lovely set gems. Both rough and oval, I see only one missing (upper right on the tray), and it's a round one so easier to find a replacement for if you choose to, with a modern gem). Otherwise, not even a single broken or cracked one. I bought it thinking I'd use those gems for replacements in some Victorian brooches we have in which the gem is cracked, but now that it's here I just think it's far too pretty a thing to take apart. The handles are black-painted wood, and the worked thick brass is also enameled. The old bristles to the brush are natural, stiff and organic, and are a bit brittle. Perhaps more for a display that to use. Some bristles are shortened by use, and we've shown it clearly for your evaluation. Yes, you could use it, but at risk of breaking more of these bristles. Should you want to clean it up for table use, you might even opt to have it re-bristled, which can be done with these.
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Antique French sterling silver, Georgian jewelry, sewing, Black Forest, etc 17th to 19th c. European
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