A Mennecy silver-mounted Snuff Box, circa 1760

This Mennecy silver-mounted snuff box is moulded with basketwork panels, the base with a reserved flower head in low relief, and painted overall with flower sprays and scattered blooms. The mount has a poinçon de charge mark for small works between 1758-62, and also the shell poinçon de décharge mark for the Paris assay master Eloy Brichard, 1756-62.

After spending many years experimenting with porcelain production under the patronage of the duc de Villeroy, arcanist François Barbin established a factory at Mennecy, south of Paris, in 1749. Wares are sometimes marked with a DV for Duché de Villeroy.

Condition: The enamels are in excellent order with only expected light wear on the base. From manufacture, there is a short firing crack to the interior, slightly extended from the rim and visible only to the inside. There is a small loss to part of the silver thumbpiece, and a tiny impression to the mount. No restoration.

Dimensions: Height 3.8 cm; Length 8.5 cm; Width 4.5 cm

Seventeenth & Eighteenth Century French Porcelain, George Savage (Barrie & Rockliff, 1960).

Eighteenth-century French Porcelain in the Ashmolean Museum, Aileen Dawson (Ashmolean Museum, Oxford, 1996).

Ref. See Bonhams ‘The Helmut Joseph Collection of Important Snuff Boxes’, 5 July 2011, lot 50, for a near identical example.