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Mid eighteenth century tortoiseshell patch box.
This extremely rare box was made in the mid part of the eighteenth century in either Britain or Italy. The very fine tortoiseshell top is inlaid with silver and mother of pearl, the silver then being decoratively chased. The lift off lid contains a mirror, the base of the box being made from undecorated tortoiseshell. It is a box that would have been used to house felt ‘beauty spots’, used to cover blemishes in the skin by the ladies of the eighteenth century. This particular form of tortoiseshell work is extremely rare, a similar example being held by the Pitt Rivers Museum in Cambridge, United Kingdom.
This charming eighteenth century box stands 1.25cm high when closed. It is 3.5cm in diameter. (Measurements approximate) It is in fine condition, showing wear appropriate to its age and substance. It has no restoration.