Maria Adler enterprise for gold and silverware production
Silver; champlevé enamel, painted enamel, carving
10.0 х 7.5 х 2.2 cm
Marks: "ADLER"; "А.К /1879"; "88"; Moscow coat of arms; Moscow city mark with alloy number "88"
Silver rectangular cigarette case, gilded inside, with rounded sides, with two compartments for cigarettes (large) and matches (small, on the front side), with two hinged lids, one - with a special plate for ignition. The top lid smooth surface is decorated with Russian style enamel paintings - an image of a peasant girl in a festive dress and three-part mythological composition on the theme of Basilisk. The bottom surface is decorated with stylized architectural motifs in the form of a peasant's cottage. An aperture with a wick is on the cigarette case rear side.
Basilisk - a mythical zoomorphic creature: snake-cock. According to popular beliefs, Basilisk appears from a cock's egg, is the keeper of treasures, a kind of house spirit. According to the legend, the cock can lay an egg once in a hundred years. Moreover, in case a girl is carrying this egg under her arm for six weeks, Basilisk that hatches out from it - obeys this girl. It brings her wealth and forecasts her fate. The symbolic image of Basilisk is thematically linked with the central image of a young married woman, or, most likely, a girl who gas just consented to a wedding, as evidenced by her festive dress, the main element of which is a woman's homespun woollen skirt, that was usually worn over a white linen one.