ANTIQUE BOXES
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Antique Boxes in English Society
1760 -1900
by ANTIGONE
Tea Caddies and Tea
Tea Caddies and Tea

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Very Fine Tortoiseshell Tea Caddy Inlaid with Engraved Mother of Pearl and White Metal Circa 1840.
A tortoiseshell caddy of curvilinear form, the lid conforming to the shape of the lower part of the box, to the extent that it looks as if it is curving inwards. It is decorated with mother of pearl inlay in a floral design. 

The caddy stands on  turned ivory feet.

The decoration and the form  of the front is particularly complex being simultaneously curved in two plains.  Circa 1840. 

Click on the images to enlarge them.

The caddy is 15cm high, 19 cm wide and 10cm deep; 6 inches high by 7.5  inches wide and 4 inches deep.

 Very Fine Tortoiseshell Tea Caddy Inlaid with Engraved Mother of Pearl and White Metal Circa 1840.
 Very Fine Tortoiseshell Tea Caddy Inlaid with Engraved Mother of Pearl and White Metal Circa 1840. tctortmop02.jpg (133272 bytes)
Inside there are twin compartments for tea each with their separate tortoiseshell lids. These have turned ivory handles. The inside of the lid is lined with velvet.

The facings are ivory

Very Fine Tortoiseshell Tea Caddy Inlaid with Engraved Mother of Pearl and White Metal Circa 1840. tctortmop07.jpg (118450 bytes)  
 

Overall the caddy is in good original condition. The shell is damaged at the back near the hinges. This has old patching.

 

 Very Fine Tortoiseshell Tea Caddy Inlaid with Engraved Mother of Pearl and White Metal Circa 1840. Very Fine Tortoiseshell Tea Caddy Inlaid with Engraved Mother of Pearl and White Metal Circa 1840.
Very Fine Tortoiseshell Tea Caddy Inlaid with Engraved Mother of Pearl and White Metal Circa 1840.  Very Fine Tortoiseshell Tea Caddy Inlaid with Engraved Mother of Pearl and White Metal Circa 1840.
 Very Fine Tortoiseshell Tea Caddy Inlaid with Engraved Mother of Pearl and White Metal Circa 1840.  

Very Fine Tortoiseshell Tea Caddy Inlaid with Engraved Mother of Pearl and White Metal Circa 1840.
Very Fine Tortoiseshell Tea Caddy Inlaid with Engraved Mother of Pearl and White Metal Circa 1840. tctortmop09.jpg (59569 bytes)

Inside the caddy is a letter from the British Broadcasting Corporation, BBC dated 11th April 1968.

It reads: 

You obviously possess a very nice tortoiseshell tea caddy inlaid with mother of pearl - its date appears to be about 1820.

Thanking you for sending the photographs which are returned herewith.

Yours Sincerely 

pp Arthur G. Negus.

 

Dictated by Mr Negus
Signed in his absence.

 

Arthur Negus appeared as a panel member on the television series Going for a Song (196676) where he was called upon to give his opinion on the value of antiques. 

In 1982 he presented Arthur Negus Enjoys (1982) He was on the  The Antiques Roadshow (198283). 

He also wrote books, including Going for a Song: English Furniture (1969) and A Life Among Antiques (1982).

News | BuyingContact usOnline History of boxes | The Schiffer BookAdvanced Search

For the historical context of this caddy read the relevant part of Antigone's Online Antique Box Book. If you click here you will go there.
We have written a highly illustrated book on Antique Boxes and Tea caddies which is being published by Schiffer Books USA. This tea caddy has been specially photographed for inclusion. 

  © 2004 Antigone Clarke and Joseph O'Kelly