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Elegant & rare antique French maker-marked Louis AUCOC of Paris 14" campaign style travel vanity & writing compendium, a beautiful chest in ebony with brass edging & inlay, "XC" or "CX" monogrammed cartouche and full of a host of original sterling silver topped jars (with matching monograms), lids, sewing and dressing implements! Fabulous! Three levels here, the top filled with sterling topped jars, perfumes or colognes and even a travel inkwell. Once you've opened the front panel, you see two slide-out drawers complete with brass strip inlays and bronze drawer pulls. The upper with spaces for brushes, etc. and the lower slide-out tray filled with dressing and vanity accoutrement. The inner lock plate of the chest is engraved "L. Aucoc Aine a Paris" so we know exactly who the maker was and his/their reputation. Louis Aucoc was a leading Parisian jeweller and goldsmith, working with his father André. The Aucoc family firm at 6 Rue de la Paix was established in Paris in 1821 and was patronized by the house of King Louis Philippe, the House of Orléans, Napoleon III and Empress Eugenie. The shop is mentioned in the first chapter of The Lady of the Camellias (French: La Dame aux Camélias, published in 1848). From 1874 to 1876, René Lalique was an apprentice to Aucoc. Lalique would later become a defining figure in the art nouveau movement.

Very much like the Palais Royal dressing boxes that we've offered in the past. The old Palais Royal, Paris, is there still, still a center of commerce, theater, dining, but in its origin it was the Palace of Cardinal Richelieu, and afterward because THE center for Royals and elites to shop, congregate socially. The items from the boutiques of the old Palais Royal remain museum pieces, highly sought after. These dressing travel chests are so rare to find now and almost never complete, even in museums. And every single piece of significant value and history. We do not know to whom this one first belonged but wouldn't it be fun to have that info. Beautifully made in the Napoleon III style with ebony or ebonized walnut veneers, heavy bronze edging and brass inlays throughout including an elegant foliate cartouche with "XC" monogram (notable here is that all sterling jar tops bear the same monogram). All silver bears the French Minerve or Minerva hallmark, the tiny number "1" within those marks means they're all in .950 silver (95% pure and higher than the .925 standard for "sterling" silver). The silversmith marks are for the maker, Louis Aucoc Aine, Paris circa 1856-1887. Yes, there are a few missing pieces or contents, as shown in the images, but still quite a few. Imagine the Grand Tour voyages this opulent chest has been on...

Very good condition. There are a few surface marks to the exterior of the box and some of the brown, likely walnut, showing around the brass strip inlays (wear to the ebony finish from years of polishing the brass). Some scratching and age cracks in the lid. No missing inlays but a few slight 'lifts'. As evidenced by the photos, there are several implements missing from the fittings. Of the jars, one smaller round one is quite broken but glued back together and the threaded portion of one of the larger cylindrical jars is stuck inside the sterling lid. A few tiny nips/chips possible but all stoppers are intact. There appears to be two missing silver pieces from the top area, front center and just to the right of it (judging from the empty spaces there). The thin cylindrical box to the left of center is missing one end's lid. Some faint dimples and denting to the sterling but, as you can see, they're very close to pristine. HEAVY, the box and contents weigh a bit over 20 lbs (9+ kg). It has a working lock mechanism with key, you must push inward on the key and rotate to release the lid and then complete the turn to release the front panel (pressing inward on key the entire time). The bronze plate on the left side front, where the front panel latches on, is missing but the right side is there. See pictures for measurements.

Item ID: 519aucoc

Superb Antique French AUCOC Marked 14" Travel Chest, Box, Sterling Topped Jars & More

$1,397 $1,995 SALE

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    Antique French sterling silver, Georgian jewelry, sewing, Black Forest, etc 17th to 19th c. European
    SALE: 30, 25, 20% OFF EVERYTHING but newest listings, (prices as marked). All the best, ALL the time!
    since 2002

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