Bonbonnière, or candy box, in intricately patterned gold and translucent, ruby-red enamel. Thin bands of gold are inlaid in the enamel. A painted enamel medallion decorates the lid of the box. A ring of interlacing green enamel outlines the edges of the lid as well as the body of the box. The medallion is an image of a young boy wearing a white outfit and a red belt. He is carrying a feathered hat in his left hand and is standing in a pastoral setting with two doves fighting each other near a spring of water. The theme of childhood appears very late in 18th century paintings. Numerous artists at the end of the 18th century, such as Élisabeth Vigée Le Brun, were inspired by the ideas that Jean-Jacques Rousseau presented in his work Emile, which was an idealization of a child’s education and a call back to Nature and simplicity. This candy box is a good example of this renewed theme of idyllic childhood at the end of the 18th century.
Diameter: 2.4 in / Height : 0.8 in
Weight: 2.8 oz
Charge mark: Jean-Baptiste Fouache (1775-1781)
Guarantee mark: Crowned letter Q for Paris 1779
Release mark: Tête de singe (Monkey head) (1775-1781) Reinspection of gold: Tête d'aigle (Eagle head)
Master Goldsmith René Antoine Bailleul. Earned Master Goldsmith title in 1769. The Cognacq Jay museum in Paris has one of his snuff boxes in its collection.
Bibliography: Louveciennes 2003. L'enfant chéri au siècle des Lumières. Musée-promenade de Louveciennes.15 mars -15 juin 2003. Christine Kayser; Xavier Salmon; Laurent Hugues.
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