Objects with musical mechanism and automaton

Case for sealing wax with automaton

    Case for sealing wax with automaton


    circa 1820

    Gold, metal, steel; engraving, painted enamel, champlevé enamel

    Height 10.8 cm

    Gold case for sealing wax quadrangular form, tapering to the sides consists of a body and a removable cover. It is decorated with blue and black enamel panels with engraved images. The surface of the case under the cover is mirror-polished. A girl with a bow and arrows of polychrome painted enamel is depicted on the central panel of the reverse side. An image of a vase with flowers is on the lower panel. An image of a harp with pigeons of black, blue and white champlevé enamel is on the opening lid on the top panel. There is an automaton made of multicoloured gold below the door. A scene "Forge of Love" with two cupids, forging arrowheads against the pastoral landscape, and an aperture for the spring winding are behind the door. A figure of a girl with polychrome painted enamel spicas is depicted on the reverse side of the central panel. A vase of flowers and a dragonfly are above, a vase with a tree, an open cage and fluttering birds are below. A floral champlevé enamel ornament is on the lid. The lower part of the case is polished, pure matrix on which the owner's personal sign is usually placed: a monogram or a coat of arms. Sealing wax and a winding key are usually stored inside the case. Winding key with an elongated ribbed grip and a cylindrical rod with a channel of square cross-section. Gold, beautifully decorated cases for solid sealing wax were intended for influential people and emphasized the status of the owner.