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Gilded Silver Filigree Flower Posy Holder made for the European Market
China
circa 1850

length: 16.5cm, weight: 33g

This posy holder is unusual in that it is of 19th century Chinese manufacture but made for the European export market. It is if the finest silver filigree and has
been entirely gilded or gold plates. It is remarkable for its pristine condition - there are no losses or repairs to the filigree and the gilding is still bright and
intact.  The cone section comprises six 'petals' or leaves, each of which comprises the finest filigree over which scrolling floral work has been overlaid in gilded
flat wires.

The stem features a filigree sphere and handle, again, all in the finest filigree and decorated with floral spandrels.

Posy holders were fashionable in the 18th and first half of the nineteenth century in Europe. Ladies would appear in public with a small posy of flowers
secured in such a holder. The pin, which is attached by chain to the holder slides through apertures in the sides of the cone of the holder to hold the flowers in
place. The ring, which is decorated with small gilded filigree spandrels, slipped over a finger of the wearer.

Related Chinese export silver filigree examples are illustrated in Forbes et al (1975, p. 239), Piotrovsky (2006, p. 28), and Crossman (1991, p. 353).

The example here is in excellent condition.

References:
Crossman, C.L,
The Decorative Arts of the China Trade: Paintings, Furnishings and Exotic Curiosities, Antique Collectors' Club, 1991.
Forbes, H.A.C.
et al, Chinese Export Silver 1785-1885, Museum of the American China Trade, 1975.
Piotrovsky, M.
et al, Silver: Wonders from the East - Filigree of the Tsars, Lund Humphries/Hermitage Amsterdam, 2006.
Provenance: UK art market

Inventory no.: 3603

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