Lot 35
  • 35

A GOLD, ENAMEL AND PEARL SINGING BIRD BOX, THE MOVEMENT BY JAQUET-DROZ & LESCHOT, THE BOX MAKER'S MARK OF GUIDON, RÉMOND, GIDE, GENEVA, 1792-1801 | A gold, enamel and pearl singing bird box, the movement by Jaquet-Droz & Leschot, the box maker's mark of Guidon, Rémond, Gide, Geneva, 1792-1801

Estimate
80,000 - 120,000 EUR
Sold
bidding is closed

Description

  • H: 3,5 cm. ; Long : 9 cm.
rectangular with cut corners, the oval central lid painted with Betsy in Trouble, and  lifting to reveal the brightly-feathered automaton bird with a bone beak, the ground enamelled in deep translucent blue over a gold ground engine-turned with stripes and rosettes within taille d'épargne borders, the angles embellished with urns and pillars, the lids bordered by half pearls, the base concealing the hinged key compartment, the pierced grille engraved twice: Jqt Droz & Leschot, London, top and base lids with maker's mark, the central engraved medallion surrounding the bird of a later date, with original enamelled key and replacement provided by A. Bontemps, in later plush case

Provenance

Belgian Noble Family. Bought by the grand-father of the present owners between the 2 wars.

Catalogue Note

The firm of Jaquet-Droz & Leschot, founded by Pierre Jaquet-Droz (1721-1790) in La Chaux de Fonds, created automata of all types from tiny mechanisms for watches to lifesize androids displayed with great success around the courts of Europe. His son and their protegé Jean-Frédéric Leschot (1746-1824) set up in business in Geneva in 1784 to invent and supply complicated automata to be exported, via the East India company in London, to China where they were highly prized as gifts for the Imperial family. The lid is painted with Betsy in trouble, engraved in 1797 by Schiavonetti, after the painting by John Russell. The apt subject illustrates the moral of what happens when a live pet canary is neglected unlike the long-lasting singing bird contained within the box. The pair to the present box, with the lid painted as a mirror image but otherwise identical, was sold Skinner's Boston, 28 October 2007, lot 558, and is now in a private collection.



The firm of Jaquet-Droz & Leschot, founded by Pierre Jaquet-Droz (1721-1790) in La Chaux de Fonds, created automata of all types from tiny mechanisms for watches to lifesize androids displayed with great success around the courts of Europe. His son and their protegé Jean-Frédéric Leschot (1746-1824) set up in business in Geneva in 1784 to invent and supply complicated automata to be exported, via the East India company in London, to China where they were highly prized as gifts for the Imperial family. The lid is painted with Betsy in trouble, engraved in 1797 by Schiavonetti, after the painting by John Russell. The apt subject illustrates the moral of what happens when a live pet canary is neglected unlike the long-lasting singing bird contained within the box. The pair to the present box, with the lid painted as a mirror image but otherwise identical, was sold Skinner's Boston, 28 October 2007, lot 558, and is now in a private collection.

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