This is a beautiful antique gilded ormolu and mother of pearl casket, circa 1870 in date.
The top, front, sides and back feature beautifully cast ormolu decorative trellis work over of a mother of pearl ground.
The interior is lined with the original pink velvet to the hinged lid and curved engraved sections to the base.
It is a lovely piece which is functional as well as being highly decorative.
In excellent condition, please see photos for confirmation.
Dimensions in cm:
Height 3 x Width 15 x Depth 10
Dimensions in inches:
Height 1 inch x Width 6 inches x Depth 4 inches
Our reference: 09554
Ormolu -(from French 'or moulu', signifying ground or pounded gold) is an 18th-century English term for applying finely ground, high-caratgoldin amercuryamalgamto an object ofbronze.The mercury is driven off in akilnleaving behind a gold-coloured veneerknown as'gilt bronze'.
The manufacture of true ormolu employs a process known as mercury-gilding orfire-gilding, in which a solution ofnitrate of mercuryis applied to a piece ofcopper,brass, or bronze, followed by the application of anamalgamof gold and mercury. The item was then exposed to extreme heat until the mercury burned off and the gold remained, adhered to the metal object.
After around 1830 because legislation had outlawed the use of mercury other techniques were used instead.Electroplatingis the most common modern technique. Ormolu techniques are essentially the same as those used onsilver, to producesilver-gilt.
also known asmother of pearl, is an organic-inorganiccomposite materialproduced by somemolluscsas an innershelllayer; it is also what makes up the outer coating ofpearls. It is strong, resilient, andiridescent.The outer layer of pearls and the inside layer ofpearl oysterandfreshwater pearl musselshells are made of nacre.
Both black and white nacre are and were used fordesignpurposes. They were used as decorative motif used in cabinet making or silversmithing. The natural nacre may be artificially tinted to almost any colour. Nacretesseraemay be cut into shapes andlaminatedto aceramictileormarblebase. The tesserae are hand-placed and closely sandwiched together, creating an irregular mosaic or pattern (such as a weave). The laminated material is typically about 2mm thick. The tesserae are thenlacqueredandpolishedcreating a durable and glossy surface.
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