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Mother of Pearl & Abalone Shell Victorian Antique Calling Card Case c1870 (Code 1923)

  • £9000


A Victorian period calling card case with diamond and triangular mother of pearl and abalone panels. The mother of pearl panels are etched with floral designs and other patterns. One side has particularly nice pink tones in the iridescence and the other has more of a green effect. It has a push button to release the cap and a hinged lid. The interior has a burgundy fabric lining to help keep the cards clean and there is a white metal panel to the top which was intended for personalisation with initials. These cases were of course used for calling cards and presenting your card at a residence or business was common practice during the 19th and early 20th century. This example likely dates around 1870.

This case is part of a recently acquired single owner collection. The predominant feature of the collection is the iridescent quality of the shells, with some particularly fine structural colours of the nacre. The colour and iridescence does of course change with the light and incident angle, so multiple images have been taken to try and give a sense of how it varies, all shot under halogen light.


Normal age related wear with a few small nicks in the panels and the usual natural flaws. The odd scratch and hairline through the shell. One of the abalone panels has a very unusual grain pattern, but is a natural form.

Measurements (Approx)

Width: 8 cm ( 3 1/8 inches )

Height: 10.5 cm ( 4 1/8 inches )

Weight: 62 grams (before packing).

Stock Code: 1923 OC19-2



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