Antique Chinese Export Silver Cigarette Case Initials on Back Heavily Embossed Dragon on Front
Description: This is an antique and rather substantial Chinese export silver cigarette case. The case depicts a heavily embossed dragon on the lid with highly detailed features. The dragon, which is wrapped around shows a large mouth and eyes as well as three-toe claws. The back of the box has the initials ELC engraved in a very decorative pattern with the number 15/117 under it. The interior of the box has a gilt finish and an elastic to hold the cigarettes in place. The piece has a pressure operated locking/opening mechanism with a thumb piece. This is a rather heavy piece (weighs ~88 grams or about 2.8 troy ounces of silver) which feels great in your hand. The piece is marked on the inside of the thumb tab in unrecognizable markings (Chinese mark) which we attempt to show in the last photo. A very well made antique with a great design. Please view photos as they are part and parcel of our description.
Date: Uncertain but most likely mid to late 1800's.
Origin: Purchased at an estate auction in Southeastern Pennsylvania. The piece was made in China.
Size: Measures ~3" by ~2 1/2" and is 1/2" deep. The piece weighs about 88 grams or a bit over 2.8 troy ounces.
Marks: Has undecipherable marking on the inside on the thumb tab mechanism (see last photo).
Distinguishing Characteristics - Most Interesting About The Piece: A beautiful and most interesting antique with a great design that is very well done. This is a piece worthy of a spot in your collection of silver boxes or cigarette cases.
Condition: The box is in excellent condition with no breaks, or repairs. The hinge is intact and works very well so does the locking mechanism and the box closes tightly. The exterior has general surface scratches and a few minor dings, but nothing of concern. The interior retains quite a bit of its original gilt but shows some staining. The original elastic is a bit frayed as can be seen in the photos. Be that as it may the piece is in great condition for being over 100 years old and having been in use for probably a long time. The piece could probably use a good cleaning, which we leave to the new owner. Be that as it may this is a great antique which very seldom comes by in such a good shape. Please see photos for additional condition information.
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