A good 18th century tinder box with a handle and sliding lid, having a divided interior enclosing a steel and flint, with the hearth at one end. It has its original elm damper lid, and one strikes the flint on the steel to create a spark using dried shavings or grass in the hearth, hence the build up of carbon. It was put out using the damper lid. The other side is for storing the steel, flint and lighting materials.
Tinder boxes were usually made of metal as it was not unusual to catch the whole box alight, and therefore they are quite rare items, especially in good condition with a damper lid as in this instance. The whole has a lovely grain, colour and patination.