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Tea Caddy of Rolled/Scrolled Paper or Quillwork & Mica Decoration, c1790
This is a hexagonal Georgian tea caddy which is beautifully decorated with rolled paper, sometimes called filigree or scrolled paper work. These caddies were produced as undecorated wooden frames during the latter part of the 18th century into the early years of the 19th. They were then decorated with gilded paper filigree work by the lady of the house. This caddy features two panels decorated with anchors (for hope) alongside the more usual floral decoration. The front panel features a decorative lock escutcheon and the background throughout the caddy is decorated with deep burgundy mica chips in typical fashion. The lid has its original metal handle and the caddy is adorned to every edge with boxwood and ebony 'barber's pole' stringing. The interior retains some of its original foil lining – it appears never to have had an internal lid. It is in beautiful condition, with no missing pieces to the rolled paper. The upper locking section is missing, as is the key and the felt on the under aspect has some moth nips. This is a stunning example of this rare and highly collectible genre and such an item is a must in any collection of early tea caddies. 6.25 ins (16cm) x 3.75 ins (9.5cm)x 4.5 ins (11.5cm). Weight 312 grams. This item appears in my book, "Antique Boxes, Inside & Out" on page 141.
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Genevieve Cummins, Sydney, Australia
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