This is a beautiful antique French ormolu mounted mahogany bijouterie cabinet, circa 1880 in date.
The oval top has a bevelled glass insert over a convex glazed cupboard door which opens to a fitted interior with a single glazed shelf. The cabinet is freestanding, the sides are all glazed and it is raised on elegant tapered cabriole legs decorated with foliate ormolu cast mounts.
Complete with working lock and key.
In excellent condition having been beautifully cleaned and waxed in our workshops, please see photos for confirmation.
Dimensions in cm:
Height 102 x Width 55 x Depth 38
Dimensions in inches:
Height 40.2 x Width 21.7 x Depth 15.0
Ormolu – (from French ‘or moulu’, signifying ground or pounded gold) is an 18th-century English term for applying finely ground, high-carat gold in a mercury amalgam to an object of bronze.The mercury is driven off in a kiln leaving behind a gold-coloured veneer known as ‘gilt bronze’.
The manufacture of true ormolu employs a process known as mercury-gilding or fire-gilding, in which a solution of nitrate of mercury is applied to a piece of copper, brass, or bronze, followed by the application of an amalgam of gold and mercury. The item was then exposed to extreme heat until the mercury burned off and the gold remained, adhered to the metal object.
After around 1830 because legislation had outlawed the use of mercury other techniques were used instead. Electroplating is the most common modern technique. Ormolu techniques are essentially the same as those used on silver, to produce silver-gilt..
Our reference: 09160