Russia, St. Petersburg
Silver, gold, cabochon; casting, presswork, chasing, gilding, enamel over casting
9.8 x 7.7 x 1.7 cm
Marks: "Р.П."; tee of St. Petersburg District Assay office in 1908-1917 with alloy mark "84"
Silver rectangular cigarette case, gilded inside, with rounded sides, with a hinged lid and a thumb ramp. The corrugated surface of the cigarette case is complemented with onlay gold and silver relief details on the hinged lid: artistically designed monograms, round coins, a composition with a putto that brings a sheaf to a girl in antique clothes with spikes in one hand and a sickle in the other (the goddess Ceres?), images of a multi-petalled flower-rosette, a lizard, a dog, a tree with lush enamel crown, a Hamsa (palm-shaped amulet popular throughout the Middle East and North Africa), a lion with a sword standing on a saber (the coat of arms of the Grand Duchy of Finland). The thumb ramp is decorated with an oval cabochon in a smooth, bezel setting. Inscription is scratched on one of the lids: "Jouvenir // d'Alexandue // 1916". Similar onlay decorative details and inscriptions on cigarette cases, made to order, were meant to remind the owner of anniversary dates, experiences, friends, wishes of success, etc.