This rectangular gold snuffbox has been chased with parallel horizontal lines beneath a pattern of leaves. Decoration in the form of figures, animals and landscape has been enamelled in both opaque and translucent colours.
Snuffboxes played an important role in fashion and self-promotion, in 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.