The Wallace Collection

The Wallace Collection, A Family Collection, A National Museum, An International Treasure House
Snuff box
  • Snuff box
  • Jean Charles Simphorien Dubos (1719 - 1781) , Goldsmith
  • Jean Charles Simphorien Dubos (1719 - 1781), Goldsmith
    After François Boucher (1703 - 1770), scenes
    After David Teniers the Younger (1610 - 1690), scenes
    After Charles-Nicolas Cochin, scenes
    After Étienne Jeaurat (1699 - 1789), scenes
    After Edmé Bouchardon (1698 -1762), scenes
  • Paris, France
  • 1756 - 1757
  • Gold and enamel
  • Object size: 4.2 x 8.5 x 6.7 cm
    Weight: 207 g
  • Maker's mark: 'J C D' with a heart, mark of Jean-Charles-Simphorien Dubos, goldsmith registered in Paris, 28 June 1748 - before 1766.
    Warden's mark: 'Q' of the Maison Commune mark for gold, Paris, 20 July 1756 - 15 July 1757.
    Warden's mark: 'S' of the Maison Commune mark for gold, Paris, 21 July 1758 - 12 July 1759.
    Charge mark: A head of an ox, for the sous-fermier Julien Berthe, Paris, 1 October 1750 - October 1756.
    Charge mark: The charge for gold of the fermier Eloy Brichard, Paris, 1 October 1756 - 1 October 1759.
    Discharge mark: A shell, for the fermier Eloy Brichard and Etienne Somfoye, Paris, October 13 1756 - 21 November 1762.
  • G23
  • Boudoir Cabinet
Commentary
Images & Media
Further Reading
  • This oval gold snuffbox is enamelled en plein (enamel applied directly onto the surface of the box) in opaque colours with genre scenes of urban life and trade. Each scene is bordered by chased scrolls and flowers in blue with foliage in green translucent enamel.
    The unknown enameller has used a wide variety of sources for the scenes that decorate this box. Many derive from prints and engravings after David Teniers the Younger painted in the seventeenth century but very popular in France in the eighteenth century. Also used are engravings from Les Cris de Paris, after well known eighteenth century French painters such as Cochin, Bouchardon and Boucher.
    Snuffboxes played an important role in fashion and self-promotion, diplomacy and, in the 19th century, in collecting. Often they were used as a currency for their monetary values and the status they could embody. Their practical purpose was often secondary – they were highly valued as art objects in their own right. Gold boxes were a barometer of the taste of the time and exemplify the skills of not only goldsmiths, but also enamellers, lapidaries and miniature painters.