A silver gilt scent box in the form of a pilgrims flask.
Dutch, late 17th century.
Measures 5.8 x 3.1 x 1.4cm (excluding pendant chain).
The body of the flask is engraved with a bishop on one side and is pierced in the form of a flower to the other, caryatids adorn the shoulders. The flask is suspend by its original pendant chains and when it is not being worn it stands upon a single turned foot which unscrews to open the box which contains a small glass flask filled with scent. The box would have contained a piece of scented cotton, the scent would have been released through the pierced floral grill.
An similar example can be found in ‘Perfume and Pomanders, Scent and Scent Bottles through the Ages. From the Schwarzkopf Collection and European Museums’ by Edmund Launert, See page 116, fig. 83. It is catalogued as; '83 - Smelling box in the shape of a pilgrim's bottle on a conical ring-foot. Silver gilt. The concave front is removable to facilitate the insertion of a sponge soaked in aromatic sub-stances. When closed it is held in place by a push-on cap which is attached to a chain. Whereas the pierced front of the container displays a stylised flower motif the cap engraved with a herringbone pattern. Holland, around 1680. H. 40 mm. V. & A.’.
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