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An extraordinary silver combination Vesta case and Stamp Box

A late 19th century silver Key of large size, the Ward springs open by means of a catch button to reveal a gilt interrior with combination stamp box, vesta case and ‘go to bed’ match holder. The strike plate is a small section of shagreen. The tip of the shaft pulls out as a seal, with space for sealing wax beyond. Marked by Sampson Mordan and Co., London,  for the assay year 1892/3 but the design registration, 211208, was entered not by Mordan but by Alexis David, an engraver of 5, Rue de Castiglione, in Paris on the 25th April 1893. The photograph supplied with the registration shows a slightly different version – the ‘go to bed’ match holder in the image appears to be hinged and the striker shagreen remains unfixed. The shaft struck also with French tax marks.

The photograph entered into the registration books shown courtesy of the National Archives.

SKU: O5754 Category:



Overall very good. Minor surface marks and some scratch marks to the end of the seal. The interior gilding is good but blackened in the interior of the vesta. There are some minor residues of glue and sealing wax. The French tax marks on the shaft of the key have slightly distorted the end of the tube.


Length – 23 cm.; Width – 7 cm.; Weight 323 gms.


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