Yekaterinburg Russian Imperial Lapidary circa 1820-30 who produced many similar works presently in the Hermitage Collection. From 1741 to 1917 the Russian Imperial Cabinet managed the various Imperial Lapidaries including Yekaterinburg which utilized precious stones mined in the Ural mountains to manufacture hardstone objects for the use both in the Imperial household and as gifts from the Czars.
The cameo lid is after the famous ancient cameo by Typhon, formerly in the collection of Peter Paul Rubens & currently in the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, is mounted as a gold snuff box. The snuff box lid is a near exact match in shape, dimensions, and material to a similar Yamsk Jasper cameo by Pyotr Ponomarev. 5720 currently in the Hermitage Collection. The latter cameo entered the Hermitage circa 1826 during the reign of Czar Nicholas I while the Imperial Lapidary was under the management of Yakov Vasilievich Kokovin. Several similar snuff boxes depicting the Tsars carved in jasper are also in the Special Treasury of the Peterhof Palace in St.This specimen is one of the finest snuff boxes produced by the Yekaterinburg Imperial Lapidary. The gold snuff box lining is marked ET twice on the lid. This French mark was used between 1864 and 1893 on imported foreign goods. Double ET marks are similarly visible on Russian Imperial presentation snuff boxes. The snuff box weighs 97 grams and is 7.8 cm length by 4.4 cm width by 2.5 cm height. The inside of the snuff box has a sweet smell of snuff. Aside for some minor scratches on the inside of the box lid the snuff box is in near perfect condition. Approximately eighteen cameos and eight decorative items carved from Yamsk Jasper from this period are identified in the Hermitage Collection from the Yekaterinburg Russian Imperial Lapidary. The lapidary was founded in 1751 as one of three centers of production supplying the Imperial family with hardstone objects carved from stone mined in the Ural Mountains. The Imperial Lapidary was under the supervision of the Imperial Cabinet which also sent many of the finest carvings away from Russia as. Thirteen cameos in the Hermitage are attributed to Odintsov which are often among the largest jasper cameos made in the Yekaterinburg Russian Imperial Lapidary from the period among similar cameos in the Hermitage collection. The finest among his works depict Czar Nicolas, Empress Alexandra, Heracles, and Neptune. Many cameos attributed to Odintsov are on the largest stones from the period identified in the Hermitage.
Christie's, Geneva, November 19, 1980, Lot 302. This item is in the category "Collectibles\Tobacciana\Snuff Boxes".
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