Antique Spanish Wooden Box with Moon Face Carvings and Brass Dial Lock 19thC (2919)
An interesting antique wooden box with carvings and a very unusual lock. The style is Spanish from the early to mid 19th century and it is likely the box is from this region. We suspect some of the elements including the base form of the box may be earlier and that it was made into this final form around 1840-60. The carvings are applied to the box rather than being blind carved from the wood, the moon faced birds are particularly unusual. The box is of wedge form with internal divisions lined with blue velvet. The wood appears to be walnut.
Perhaps the most unique aspect is the latch. It works using a brass clock dial and when the hand is in the right position is allows the latch to be withdrawn and the box opened. It is more novelty than security as the open point is designated by a bump in the dial. We have not come across this form previously and the exact method used is hidden under the fabric. It does appear more artisan than factory made.
The shape and internal dividers suggest it was intended for something specific although we have been unable to identify what this may have been. Very unlikely you are ever going to find another and it looks like something from a fantasy movie set!
Box with 19th century adaptations. A piece of carving to the cartouche above the brass dial missing. Period wear/minor losses and faults. Some nail heads protruding slightly to the back likely from an old repair. Wear to interior.
Height: 15 cm ( 6 inch ) at the back
Width: 26 cm ( 10 1/4 inch )
Weight: 1130 grams (before packing)
Stock Code: 2919 FB22-2
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