Antique Belle Epoque era French sterling silver travel liquor flask. Of quality crystal decorated with wheel cut fluting and engraved intaglios of floral garland swags. Surmounted with sterling silver mounts with gilt vermeil finish and patterned a neoclassical motif of wreaths and fluted panels. Comprising of a sterling cork lined lid and threaded collar with a removable drinking cup attached to the base. Measures 4 5/8" length. In overall good condition. One or two tiny fleabite nibbles to the wheel cut fluting but no chips or cracks. Fully hallmarked with the French Minerva 1st standard mark, which depicts the head of the goddess Minerva with a number 1 beside her to denote a silver content of .950/1000 (almost 95% pure silver, and higher than the standard .925 sterling!) Also bearing maker's marks for Parisian silversmiths Saglier Freres, active circa 1897 at 12 rue d'Enghien. Originally the firm of Victor Saglier in Paris, from 1870s to 1894. In 1894, his two sons took over the company and renamed it Saglier Freres.
Sometimes mistaken for a perfume bottle, bottles such as these were originally serviceable as portable flasks indented for liquor, 'spirits', absinthe or tonics and herbals. Though certainly usable for perfume if desired and are perfect to display among scent bottle collections. These flasks could easily hold a substantial amount of one's favorite liquor, to be served in the detachable tumbler or drinking cup at the base and ideal for a 'shot' of whiskey or flavored liqueur. These highly collectible 'spirit' flasks are known as carriage flasks, handy for short travel and easily stow-able in a purse or pocket during a night out at the theatre or opera. Also referred to as a flacon a eau de melisse, after a type of herbal 'spirits' similar to absinthe made from lemon balm favored for its fresh citrus taste and used as a tonic against migraines. A convenient accessory for a suitable "restoratif" on a cold carriage journey or at a tedious social event.
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