Wonderful fully gilded Tobacco or Patch Box. Fully hallmarked for Austria, Vienna early 1800s and maker AH or HV.
6.8 x 4.2 x 1.4cm / 2.67 x 1.65 x 0.55
47gram / 1.6oz
Perhaps one of the reasons that people find small silver boxes so fascinating is just because they are small boxes, for we are always intrigued by the miniature, impressed by the craftmanship implicit in a tour de force way on a small scale. But there is another explanation of the obvious attraction these boxes have for the casual visitor to museums and to the dedicated collector alike. Many people sense the associations of these boxes, even if they are larly those exquisite confections, a mode of life remote from ours, a period that seems in retrospect more romantic and more leisured then the mundane present in which we are condemned to live. These boxes belong to a period that seems strangely mannered to us, when etiquette was no mere formality but a way of life. They recall the Versailles of Louis XV. They call to mind Strawberry Hill where Horace Walpole built his rococo grotto and wrote letters interminably. They conjure up that strange court of the schizophrenic Frederic the Great, the St Petersburg of those amorous Empresses of Russia, and Bath under the spell of Beau Nash. Sacheverell Sitwell wrote that; we have the memory of those who handled them so that they become little personal things of ghostly evocation. At their finest they are among the most lovely and entrancing objects made by human hands.
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