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Lot 9: Plique à Jour Boat – Buy Now – £19,800.00

Plique à Jour Boat
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Price: £19,800.00
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Description:
An extremely important plique- a -jour Viking boat by Marius Hammer This masterpiece is one of the largest boats known fully marked on the base, the interior with royal blue translucent enamel the rest in plique a jour enamel width spanning 37cm. Excellent no repairs or damage. Provenance: Private collection New York
Dimensions:
Height: 18cm
Width: 37cm
Length: 13cm
Circa: 1900
Condition: fine

*Any condition statement is given as a courtesy to a client, is only an opinion and should not be treated as a statement of fact. Authenticated Internet Auctions shall have no responsibility for any error or omission. The absence of a condition statement does not imply that the lot is in perfect condition or completely free from wear and tear, imperfections or the effects of ageing.

Lot 14: Russian Enamel Spoon – Buy Now – £880.00

Russian Enamel Spoon
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Price: £880.00
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Description:
A beautiful Russian spoon, in full ground Cloisonne enamel, with shades of greens, creams, blues and pinks. The spoon handle with a twisted stem, topped with green enamel by 6th Artel
Dimensions:
Height:
Width:
Length: 16.5cm
Circa: 1890
Condition:

*Any condition statement is given as a courtesy to a client, is only an opinion and should not be treated as a statement of fact. Authenticated Internet Auctions shall have no responsibility for any error or omission. The absence of a condition statement does not imply that the lot is in perfect condition or completely free from wear and tear, imperfections or the effects of ageing.

Lot 16: A Fine Gold and Multicoloured Agate Hardstone Box – Buy Now – £16,500.00

A Fine Gold and Multicoloured Agate Hardstone Box
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Price: £16,500.00
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Description:
A fine and rare multi-coloured agate and Gold hardstone snuff box With a dedication engraved under the lid, translating as ‘pray for a true friend’. One explanation is that it was left by ‘AM’ to someone as a bequest. prov Abraham Bracebridge of Stanhope Street, Mayfair, eldest son of another Abraham Bracebridge (d. 1789) of Atherstone, Warwickshire. He inherited the bulk of his father’s estate. The younger Abraham Bracebridge (1748-1832) suffered business reverses which led to him selling off some of his estate in 1817.
Dimensions:
Height: 2.6cm
Width: 10.8cm
Length: 5.2cm
Circa: 1760
Condition: fine

*Any condition statement is given as a courtesy to a client, is only an opinion and should not be treated as a statement of fact. Authenticated Internet Auctions shall have no responsibility for any error or omission. The absence of a condition statement does not imply that the lot is in perfect condition or completely free from wear and tear, imperfections or the effects of ageing.

Lot 24: Battersea Enamel “Port” Bottle Ticket – Buy Now – £1,650.00

Battersea Enamel
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Price: £1,650.00
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Description:
Engraved ravenet after a design by James Guin, printed and red and lightly over painted in colours, with two putti struggling with a youthful satyr on top of a large barrel, fruit vines around them. The barrel titled ‘Port’
Dimensions:
Height:
Width: 7.8cm
Length:
Circa: 1753-1756
Condition: good

*Any condition statement is given as a courtesy to a client, is only an opinion and should not be treated as a statement of fact. Authenticated Internet Auctions shall have no responsibility for any error or omission. The absence of a condition statement does not imply that the lot is in perfect condition or completely free from wear and tear, imperfections or the effects of ageing.

Lot 28: An Important Bilston Pillement Snuff Box – SOLD – £3,300.00

An Important Bilston Pillement Snuff Box
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Price: £3,300.00

SOLD

Description:
The lid and sides painted with designs from the prolific French artist Jean Pillement (1790-1808) rectangular in shape a large proportion imaginative and based very much on the orient. There are 39 engraved plates in the Ladies Amusement, inspired by the Chinese
Dimensions:
Height: 4cm
Width: 7.5cm
Length: 6cm
Circa:
Condition: good

*Any condition statement is given as a courtesy to a client, is only an opinion and should not be treated as a statement of fact. Authenticated Internet Auctions shall have no responsibility for any error or omission. The absence of a condition statement does not imply that the lot is in perfect condition or completely free from wear and tear, imperfections or the effects of ageing.

Lot 55: Vienna Cup and Cover by Hermann Bohm – Buy Now – £13,200.00

Vienna Cup and Cover by Hermann Bohm
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Price: £13,200.00
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Description:
The cover with an enamelled finial of a classical maiden on a slightly domed base with two reserves painted with scenes of Venus at her toilet with silver pie crust border painted with classical scenes on a pink ground by Hermann Bohm
Dimensions:
Height: 41cm
Width:
Length:
Circa: 1880
Condition: Fine

*Any condition statement is given as a courtesy to a client, is only an opinion and should not be treated as a statement of fact. Authenticated Internet Auctions shall have no responsibility for any error or omission. The absence of a condition statement does not imply that the lot is in perfect condition or completely free from wear and tear, imperfections or the effects of ageing.

Lot 57: Viennese and Enamel Rock Crystal Tazza – Buy Now – £2,200.00

Viennese and Enamel Rock Crystal Tazza
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Price: £2,200.00
BUY IT NOW

Description:
An extremely fine and rare example. The enamel like fish scales in Pale Blue, White, Green and Dark Blue. All inlaid with gold leaf patterns in their centres with silver filigree framing. The engraved rock crystal bowl held up by three storks amongst green enamel bullrushes The bottom mount as above holding an inverted rock crystal bowl On the reverse Dark Blue enamels with swages of gold leaf flowers
Dimensions:
Height: 14cm
Width: 10cm
Length:
Circa: 1880
Condition:

*Any condition statement is given as a courtesy to a client, is only an opinion and should not be treated as a statement of fact. Authenticated Internet Auctions shall have no responsibility for any error or omission. The absence of a condition statement does not imply that the lot is in perfect condition or completely free from wear and tear, imperfections or the effects of ageing.

Lot 60: Rock Crystal Ewer and Tray – Viennese Silver Gilt – Buy Now – £13,200.00

Rock Crystal Ewer and Tray - Viennese Silver Gilt
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Price: £13,200.00
BUY IT NOW

Description:
The rock crystal carved with swirling flutes enhanced by corded silver mounts, the silver-gilt mounts enamelled with creatures among scrollwork, Ewer with town and maker’s mark, Tazza with later French control mark only
Dimensions:
Height: 20.5cm
Width:
Length:
Circa: 1890
Condition:

*Any condition statement is given as a courtesy to a client, is only an opinion and should not be treated as a statement of fact. Authenticated Internet Auctions shall have no responsibility for any error or omission. The absence of a condition statement does not imply that the lot is in perfect condition or completely free from wear and tear, imperfections or the effects of ageing.

Lot 61: Viennese Jewelled Clock on Lapis Base – Buy Now – £4,400.00

Viennese Jewelled Clock on Lapis Base
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Price: £4,400.00
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Description:
The Clock with a watch movement signed Breguet 4631 with a cabochon sapphire surround. Supported by two columns surmounted by baskets of gems the finial another basket of pearls emeralds’ and rubies. Moonstone glisten around the base of the clock forming a mock pendulum sitting on a lapis base itself set with cabochon amethyst and Moonstones
Dimensions:
Height: 19cm
Width:
Length:
Circa: 1890
Condition:

*Any condition statement is given as a courtesy to a client, is only an opinion and should not be treated as a statement of fact. Authenticated Internet Auctions shall have no responsibility for any error or omission. The absence of a condition statement does not imply that the lot is in perfect condition or completely free from wear and tear, imperfections or the effects of ageing.

Lot 65: Viennese silver and enamel pendant clock – Buy Now – £3,300.00

Viennese silver and enamel pendant clock
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Price: £3,300.00
BUY IT NOW

Description:
The highly painted clock supported by a pelican feeding her signets. The circular base with four vignettes of amorous, couples the interior painted with mythical scenes. The finial a flying silver and enamel bird. movement working.
Dimensions:
Height: 20cm
Width: 9cm
Length:
Circa: 1880
Condition:

*Any condition statement is given as a courtesy to a client, is only an opinion and should not be treated as a statement of fact. Authenticated Internet Auctions shall have no responsibility for any error or omission. The absence of a condition statement does not imply that the lot is in perfect condition or completely free from wear and tear, imperfections or the effects of ageing.

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About Us

The Antique Enamel Company brings all the thrill of the auction room to life for everyone online, with our State of the Art website and specialised photography the experience you will get is one of totally confidence as if the articles are in your hand

Our Low Buyers premiums should also make you feel that your purchases stay within your comfort zone and our 360° photography puts the article on your desk armchair or wherever you’re browsing

We are so convinced that this is the future we are only selling online Viewing is now a pleasure, not a pain.

The Antique Enamel Company was founded in London by John Jaffa. John has been one of London’s premier dealers in 18th to early 20th century English and Continental enamels, gold boxes, Objects of Vertu, tort & pique items, musical bird boxes, silver cigarette cases, porcelain, desk seals, etui & sewing items, papier mâché, Fabergé and rare perfume bottles for the past three decades.

He has built private collections for individuals across the world and loaned prized acquisitions to Museums. John is recognized by his peers as having one of the most extensive collections in this field offered within a wide price range. Item Sourcing, As well as carrying an extensive range of fine enamels and other pieces, The Antique Enamel Company is also happy to source particular items for clients.

Vinaigrettes

Vinaigrettes

Vinaigrettes, popular from the late Eighteenth Century through to the end of the Nineteenth Century, were small containers used for holding various aromatic substances, usually dissolved in vinegar. By the Nineteenth Century, a variety of these perfume containers were on the market. The vinaigrette, a gilded metal box with a pierced, decorated interior grille, was used to hold sponges soaked in scented vinaigres de toilette (aromatic vinegar). The interiors were gilded to prevent the silver from staining. From 1800-1850 the boxes were manufactured in vast quantities and in various shapes and forms, many of the monogrammed, sometimes with the initials of the giver and recipient in a presentation inscription. The lids were sometimes decorated to commemorate important events, e.g. the death of Lord Nelson in 1805. Later they might depict specific houses or churches. Often the shapes were delicate and tasteful, reflecting the sophistication of the owner.

As with many personal antique items, the more novel the design and the more unusual the shape, the more desirable the vinaigrette. This development in design away from the standard rectangular and oval box to experimental shapes including books, wallets & satchels, nuts, eggs, watches, crowns and hearts to name a few, showcased the manufacturers’ skills and the owner’s or giver’s taste and status. These more unusual designs such as muscle shells and acorns have become very valuable to the collectors of today.

As designs became more experimental, so too did decorative features. During the Regency Period the grilles became more and more elaborate with intricate scrollwork, flowers and foliage. Other materials began to be used in addition to silver including gold, and many of the most desirable vinaigrettes had lids decorated with jewels or made out of polished agate, carnelian, onyx or other stones of interest.

Vinaigrettes were mostly worn around the neck by women for convenience – being able to quickly douse one’s self with scent or raise the preferred scents to the nose whilst travelling! They also proved useful in combatting ladies’ frequent fainting episodes caused by the wearing of tightly laced corsets.

However, they were as much a fashionable statement as they were a practical necessity.

Some of the finest examples from the era are demonstrated in the work of Nathanial Mills.

Viennese enamel

Viennese enamel

With a long history of the decorative arts industry, the Austrian capital of Vienna became a key centre of decorative enamelling in the second half of the Nineteenth Century. Major workshops by well-known silversmiths such as Bohm and Ratzersdorfer created elaborate confections in the ‘Ringstrasse’ taste, catering primarily to a burgeoning affluent clientèle and made largely for export.

Ornate display and novelty objects decorated with enamel proved ideal accents for the nineteenth century drawing room, particularly as table centrepieces or ‘Nefs’. Their subtle shadings with occasional eye-popping bursts of brilliant colour provided the perfect complement to similarly hued furnishings and wall hangings.

“Many works copied Renaissance designs, featuring rock crystal and lapis lazuli and illustrations and decorations drawing on classical mythology.” The rich painterly effects employed on Viennese enamels and drawn from the Rococco painters of the era, conformed to the contemporary Viennese taste for opulence. Whilst nefs were among the most dramatic of Viennese enamels, there was also demand for a myriad of other enamelled objects including lidded tankards, fanciful mantlepiece clocks, drinking horns, ewers and tazzas.

In the late Nineteenth Century and onwards, such was the popularity of Viennese enamels, the process of enamelling was taught in the Academy School of Art Craftsmanship which was connected to the Museum of Vienna under the patronage of Baron Felicien von Myrbach.

Snuff boxes

Snuff boxes

The consumption of snuff or powdered tobacco rapidly increased in the Seventeenth Century and by the beginning of the Eighteenth Century it was acceptable for even ladies to inhale and became the approved tobacco product favoured by nobility.

By the late Seventeenth Century, ornate boxes were being produced to keep the snuff dry. As the trend for snuff flourished throughout Eighteenth and Nineteenth Century Europe, so too did the elaborate enamel decorations of the snuff box.

Snuff boxes became major (often bespoke) essential, personal possessions made in a variety of materials, from gold and silver to tortoiseshell or horn. Small boxes were made for the pocket and larger, communal boxes were made for table use. Shapes were not only limited to simple rectangles. Porcelain containers resembling trunks were common, as were ovals. Some were even designed in the shape of shells.

Intricate enamel decorations adorned the most precious and desirable snuff boxes, depicting everything from miniature landscapes and bucolic scenes, to tiny portraits or grisaille cameos of their owners. Some of the most distinguished snuff boxes were the French tabatières, which were made from gold and set with diamond, amethysts and sapphires.

The Antique Enamel Company stocks a huge variety of snuff boxes that were manufactured all over Europe and Russia and range from the elaborate bejewelled pieces from the noblest echelons of society to the more affordable, but nonetheless beautiful and important boxes created for the more modest snuff taker.

Porcelain

Porcelain

In the late Seventeenth Century ‘porcelain fever’ broke out across Europe. Princes and wealthy merchants were consumed by the passion to collect and use Asian porcelain. Imports from China and Japan were expensive and ownership was a tangible sign of prestige and taste. After many experiments and years later in the Eighteenth Century, Europe developed its own techniques and porcelain manufacture spread and dominated the production centres of taste throughout continental Europe.

Austrian Porcelain began in 1718 at Claudius Innocentius Du Papier’s factory together with key personnel from Meissen before it was taken over by Empress Maria Theresa in 1744. English porcelain became commercially successful in 1745 with the establishment of the Chelsea factory and later at Bow, in the Midlands, East Anglia and the West of England. Charming ornamental birds and animals for the middle class market became particularly popular.

The French goût chinois (Chinese taste) also gave way to a French national production of porcelain in the Eighteenth Century as demand amongst the nobility and wealthy bourgeoisie for porcelain decoration, dining wear, refined porcelain tea drinking and chocolate plates soared. Small factories such as Chantilly and Villeroy-Mennecy enjoyed noble patronage but it was Vincennes-Sèvres that achieved royal patronage and ownership and became the arbiter of style throughout Europe until the French Revolution, whereafter Limoges and the production of hard-paste porcelain took off.

German porcelain was first produced commercially at Meissen in 1710 but by the end of the Eighteenth Century, it became fashionable amongst German royalty to own a porcelain factory and they cropped up throughout the German states. Frederick the Great sometimes referred to himself as the ‘best customer’ of his Royal Porcelain Factory in Berlin, many of which were decorated with Rococo designs or Harlequin performances.

The Commedia dell’Arte formed one of the most distinctive subjects of porcelain collectables. This was a popular form of theatre throughout eighteenth century Europe, displaying colourful costumes and comic poses and gestures of the actors. Porcelain figurines were usually ornaments for tables.

Musical & bird boxes

Musical & bird boxes

The singing bird box or ‘boîte á oiseau chanteur’ originated in Geneva in the late Eighteenth Century, with its first design attributed to Pierre Jaquet-Droz. They were usually rectangular shaped boxes containing a miniature automaton singing bird concealed beneath an oval lid and activated by a lever. The French also used the more general term of ‘tabatière’.

The outer casing is a rectangular box that could be made of base metal, precious metal or tortoiseshell with an oval hole edged by a decorative metal bezel. The front of the box usually has a small slider that when pushed to the right, reveals the pop up of a small mechanical feathered bird that begins to turn from side to side, flap its wings and sometimes produces birdsong.

Another famed bird box maker Jean Frédéric Leschot joined forces with Jaquet-Droz to develop technology further, allowing variable pitch in bird song and furthering demand and popularity throughout Europe. By the end of the Eighteenth Century, bird boxes or musical tabatières were also being manufactured in France, Germany and England, all building on both the mechanical advances and the decorative intricacies of their origins.

The Swiss Brugiuer family gained great fame in miniature songbird mechanisms that were contained in richly decorated snuff cases by Genevan enamelists shch as Richter, Dufey and Procchietto. Charles Abraham Brugiuer resided in London in the early Nineteenth Century where demand grew further before the family returned to Geneva to develop and refine their technology even more.

France too became a booming centre of automata production in the second half of the Nineteenth Century, where the Mason Botnems flourished and developed their own mechanical advances.

These musical or singing bird boxes highlight a wondrous marriage between the skill and ingenuity of the watchmaker and the talents of the goldsmith and enameller.

Bonbonnièrre

Bonbonnièrre

Bonbonnièrres are small decorative boxes containing ‘bonbons’ or sweets. Hence the derivation of the term ‘bonbonnièrre’ from the French word ‘bonbon’. Everyone had bad breath in the Eighteenth Century so these beautiful little boxes were not only celebrated gifts but like most enamel boxes of the era, they also contained very useful necessities of everyday life – sugar coated seeds and nuts that were sucked to disguise the unfortunate smell of halitosis!

Amongst wealthy aristocratic circles these small boxes of sweets – each holding only a few confections were given to celebrate birthdays, christenings and marriages. The earliest sweets would have been dry and rather had confections known as ‘confits’ (sugared nuts, cloves and seeds) and diamond from sugar ‘lozenges’. In the Seventeenth and Eighteenth Centuries, sugar was quite costly – only available via shipment from the Caribbean Islands’ sugar plantations. So too were their containers – sometimes made of gold, precious stones, crystals or porcelain. Even owning a bonbonnièrre indicated a person as someone of wealth and status. Gifting a bonbonnièrre not only provided a thoughtful memento of a special occasion, but it also significantly served as a reminder of the giver’s own social status.

First popularised in France, bonbonnièrres were later introduced to Scotland and England in the Eighteenth Century as the local expertise and flair for enamelling took off. It Italy, they were traditionally given as wedding gifts, each enclosing five sugared almonds, representing fertility, health, wealth, happiness and longevity, as well as the bittersweet life of a married couple.

Generally made in enamel on metal, in porcelain with metal mounts and some exquisite and very expensive examples in gold. A few were also made in glass but these are even rarer to come by due to their fragility.

Decorative concepts tend to be quite whimsical and intricate. Some are set with small portraits or landscapes and precious stones – particularly the gold examples. The English were particularly good at fashioning whimsical animal forms in enamel on copper.

Candlesticks

Candlesticks

The Eighteenth Century was a great age of candlelight, and the salons of the nobility were lit by many hundreds of candles from chandeliers, candelabra and wall sconces as the gentry wanted to prioritise the aesthetics of the light source rather than just ensuring its functionality.

Table candlesticks began to take on a great variety of design and material. The great houses contained many dozens of pairs of silver candlesticks, and consequently there are many surviving examples from English eighteenth century decorative arts.

However, it was the rapid change of fashion in the Eighteenth Century from the plain Queen Anne style to the elaborate Late Baroque of early Georgian and later Rococo, Neoclassical and Regency styles that ensured an even larger variety in production. A similar evolution of style took place throughout Europe. Partly due to increasing wealth of the Eighteenth Century and partly due to incredible advances in design and production techniques, the brass candlestick was replaced by much more elegant designs that became presentations pieces in their own right.

It is these much rarer and more sought after decorative enamel candlesticks that are another specialism of the Antique Enamel Company, many of which have graced our catalogues over the years.

Micro-mosaic boxes

Micro-mosaic boxes

In eighteenth century Europe, boxes played a significant role in the conduct of social affairs produced for the affluent nobility all over France, Switzerland, Germany, Russia, Austria and Italy and even as far as Sweden and Denmark.

Small rectangular gold boxes became the century’s most sought after accessories taking form for all sorts of uses.

Micro-mosaic boxes were usually purchased in Rome by travellers on the Grand Tour. These boxes feature an Italian micro-mosaic design set into the cover of a French or English snuff box.