Vintage Art-Nouveau repousse handheld vanity mirror. The earliest handheld mirrors were used by the Romans who introduced them to Europe. During the 1500’s craftsmen from Venice began to make glass handheld mirrors. The craftsmen would cover the back with a mixture of tin and mercury. This changed in the 1840’s when silver began to be used for this process to create the mirror finish. During the Victorian Age, these vanity mirrors were being imported to the US from Europe. That all changed In 1854, when Hugh Rock got the first US patent and the handheld vanity mirrors began to be manufactured in the United States. These vanity mirrors that can still be found today were most likely made between 1885 and 1930.This vanity mirror has a very ornate and unique repousse design on the back which depicts a lady with a winged insect, in what appears to be a butterfly, which has landed on her hand. The front of the mirror is beveled. The mirror is 10” long and 5 ¼” wide.The condition of the mirror is excellent with very minimal loss of silver to the face and the condition of the mirror back is good with a substantial amount of the silver plating has worn off.
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