A GOLD AND ENAMEL PORTRAIT BOX WITH TIMEPIECE, JACQUES-ALEXANDRE GUILLEMOT, PARIS, 1798-1809
of toothpick case form, the lid applied with two upright oval glazed panels, the upper containing a miniature on ivory of Elisa Baciocchi, by Jean-Baptiste Isabey, signed, with curled dark hair, the lower with white enamel dial signed: Malide & Marguerite, Arabic numerals and outer minute ring, blued steel hand, an aperture above with visible paste-set balance, the movement gilded cylinder escapement with sliding cover on the interior of the lid, the ground and sides decorated with delicate trailing foliage in dark blue enamel on a polished ground, the base with diagonally-striped engine-turning within a similar border, maker's mark, unofficial Paris petite garantie, Paris cock's head petite garantie 1798-1809
8.7cm., 3⅜in wide
Good condition. The dial with a small scratch between 8 and 9; the base with a few light surface scratches throughout, commensurate with age. The front side probably partially re-lined. Portrait miniature and blue enamel in very nice condition, rose diamonds complete. The glass above the miniature slightly loose/movable.
Movement: currently not working, as unable to be wound due to missing key, balance wheel rotates freely
"In response to your inquiry, we are pleased to provide you with a general report of the condition of the property described above. Since we are not professional conservators or restorers, we urge you to consult with a restorer or conservator of your choice who will be better able to provide a detailed, professional report. Prospective buyers should inspect each lot to satisfy themselves as to condition and must understand that any statement made by Sotheby's is merely a subjective, qualified opinion. Prospective buyers should also refer to any Important Notices regarding this sale, which are printed in the Sale Catalogue.
NOTWITHSTANDING THIS REPORT OR ANY DISCUSSIONS CONCERNING A LOT, ALL LOTS ARE OFFERED AND SOLD AS IS" IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE CONDITIONS OF BUSINESS PRINTED IN THE SALE CATALOGUE."
Elisa Bonaparte (1777-1820), a younger sister of Napoleon, was married in 1797 to Félix Baciocchi, a Corsican nobleman. Napoleon granted her the principalities of Piombino and Lucca and, in 1809, made her Grand Duchess of Tuscany. Elisa had both financial and artistic interests as a ruler of Tuscany and established an Académie des Beaux-Arts as well as encouraging the local pietra dura workshops. After her brother's defeat, Elisa assumed the title of Contessa di Compignano and moved first to Bologna and then to Trieste.
Jacques-Alexandre Guillemot first became master in 1783 sponsored by Jean-Antoine Robiquet, entering a mark on 18 July from the pont au Change where he remained until 1787 when he moved to the rue de la Barillerie until 1793. He entered a post-revolutionary mark for bijouterie : le tout around 1800 and is recorded in various almanacs at 42 quai des Orfèvres until around 1810.