Lot 783
  • 783

A gold royal double portrait presentation snuff box, Alexandre-Raoul Morel, Paris, 1838-1842

15,000 - 20,000 GBP
bidding is closed


  • A gold royal double portrait presentation snuff box, Alexandre-Raoul Morel, Paris, 1838-1842
  • ivory, gold, leather (case)
  • 9.2cm., 3 5/8 in. wide
rectangular with waisted sides, the lid inset with portrait miniatures of Prince Ferdinand Philippe, Duke of Orleans (1810-1842), by Lizinska de Mirbel, unsigned, wearing a black coat with velvet collar, black cravat, white shirt and the star of the Légion d'Honneur, and of his consort, Hélène of Mecklenburg-Schwerin (1814-1858), wearing a white dress and a wreath of flowers, between chased scrolls and foliage in relief on a matted ground, the base chased with the arms of the City of Paris and the presentation inscription: 'La Ville de Paris au Général Atthalin', maker's mark and Paris 3e titre for 1838-1847, in  original brown leather case with the gilt ship emblem of Paris

Catalogue Note

Lizinska de Mirbel (1796-1849) was official miniature painter to Louis XVIII and  Louis-Philippe I, King of the French. She met with great success and painted portraits of the most influential aristocrats, politicians, intellectuals and artists of the time such as Jean-Dominique Ingres. She died prematurely of cholera in 1849. Five other portrait miniatures by L. de Mirbel of the Duke of Orleans are recorded: one in the Musée de Condé, Chantilly, previously in the collection of Duc d'Aumale; one in the Musée Calvet, Avignon, dated 1844 ; one in the collection Guizot, current location unknown, dated 1845 ; one sold Christie's London, 17 October 1995, lot 107, dated and signed 1837 ; one sold Delorme & Collin du Bocage, 3 February 2011, lot 159, signed and dated 1843, acquired by the Orleans family in 1843.

Prince Ferdinand Philippe of Orléans (1810-1842) was the eldest son of Louis Philippe d'Orléans, Duke of Orléans. Following his father's succession as Louis-Philippe I,  King of the French, in 1830, he became the Prince Royal and subsequently Duke of Orléans. He pursued a brilliant military career which gave him much prestige and popularity, devoting himself to the improvement of the troops' living conditions and morale.  Ferdinand Philippe was a talented draughtsman and spent 100,000 to 150,000 francs from his Civil List allowance each year on cultural patronage or art purchases which were kept in his vast apartments in the Palais des Tuileries. He died in 1842, never to succeed his father or see the collapse of the July Monarchy and subsequent exile of his family to England.

Louis Marie Baptiste Atthalin, Baron Atthalin (1784-1856)) was a French Army officer, who distinguished himself in military actions during the Napoleonic campaigns in 1806-1807 and came to the attention of the Emperor who made him his aide de camp in 1811. He then joined Louis-Philippe d’Orléans in 1814 in the same role, and faithfully supported the Orléans family. In 1830, he was named Marechal de Camp and was sent to Russia officially to inform the Emperor Nicholas I of the new King. He was then promoted Lieutenant General, and progressively rose through the ranks of the Legion d'Honneur until he received the Grand Cross in 1846. The subsequent fall and exile of the Orléans family, however, left him stripped of his titles. He retired on 14 August 1848[citation needed] and stayed away from politics for the remainder of his life.