Mots-clefs

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A jewelled gold and enamel Imperial presentation snuff box, probably Hanau, circa 1891. Estimation 10,00015,000 GBP. Photo Sotheby’s

of cartouche form, the lid applied with the diamond and enamel-set cypher of Emperor Wilhelm II under the Imperial crown on a sablé ground, within a shaped oval diamond-set border, surrounded by six flowerheads each set with a large diamond on a foliate ground chased in relief, the sides and base also chased with scrolling foliage; 8.3cm., 3 1/4 in wide

PROVENANCE: The interior is engraved with a presentation inscription from their Imperial Majesties Wilhelm II and Empress Augusta Victoria, on the occasion of the visit in July 1891 to Sheriff Augustus Harris, signed by the German Ambassador Count Hatzfeld;
sale, Christie’s Geneva,17 November 1981, lot 112

Notes: In early July 1891, Wilhelm II (1859-1941), Emperor of the Germans and King of Prussia, visited London with his consort Augusta Victoria. This was was the occasion of lavish receptions and entertainements. Sir Augustus Henry Glossop Harris (1852-1896), British actor, impresario, and dramatist, was involved in the organisation as the newly appointed Sheriff and Deputy Lieutenant of the City of London. On 8th July, their Imperial Majesties saw at the Royal Italian Opera, Covent Garden, an evening of acts from four different operas, and on 10 July, a lunch was held at Guildhall.

The presentation inscription reads: ‘ German Embassy / London July 13th 1891 / Dear Sir, / I have great pleasure in forwarding / to you, by command of His Majesty The Emperor and King, my august Sovereign / the herewith enclosed snuff box with / The Emperor’s initials and the Imperial / Crown, with which His Majesty has been / previously pleased to present you as a / remembrance of the Emperor’s visit to / the City of London and in acknow-/ledgment of the magnificent / entertainment provided by you / for Their Imperial Majesties / the Emperor and Empress / at the Royal Italian Opera / Mr Sheriff Augustus Harris / believe me, dear Sir, yours very truly / Guildhall / signed ‘E. C. Hatzfeld’

Sotheby’s. Of Royal and Noble Descent Londres, 24 févr. 2015, 10:30 AM

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