An interesting George III silver Snuffbox.
A George III small rectangular silver Snuffbox, with rounded ends, the lid inset with a jasper panel, London 1806, by Phipps and Robinson. The lid of the box is engraved ‘Friend of Freedom.’
The significance of the engraving on the lid is clearly political. It could relate to an affiliation with a ‘Whig Club’ or perhaps be a reference to the emancipation of slavery: the Foreign Slave Abolition Act was passed in May 1806 [the hallmarking year began on St. Dunstan’s Day, 19th May, which implies that this snuffbox was hallmarked between that date in May 1806 and May 1807]. The Slave Abolition Bill received Royal Assent on 25th March 1807. The Whig Leader, Charles James Fox, who died in September 1806, was a strong opponent of Slavery as well as a supporter of religious tolerance and individual liberty.
Good overall with light surface marking from use. The back of the box below the hinge has a later scratched ‘K’ and the area around that letter has been polished [see images]. The interior gilding of good colour with minor marks from use.
Length – 5.80 cm.; Width – 3.10 cm.; Depth – 1.90 cm.; Weight – 49 gms.