A traveling set comprising fifteen glass containers of various function and size all mounted with silver gilt engraved tops, each with the co-joined initials, A and I, lined and filled in leather for compartments. The silver fully marked Abraham Brownett, London 1863. Each piece of silver is also marked for the retailer Asprey 166 Bond St., below a royal frown, and in addition the interior of the box identifies the retailer “ASPREY MANUFACTURER TO HER MAJESTY 166 BOND ST. W.”
The fine quality macassar ebony case is designed as a traveling item, completely outlined in brass and with brass campaign handles. When unlocked and the lid is raised the front drops down to receive bottles or boxes when in use. A drawer, leather lined and with a recessed handle can be accessed from the front, and there is a further hidden secret drawer lined with velvet and fitted for rings and jewelry beneath the visible drawer. These drawers may only be accessed by knowing its secret which is indeed ingenious.
Founded in 1781 by William Asprey, the business soon became a luxury emporium, employing silver and gold smiths, jewelers, watchmakers, designers and craftsmen supplying the carriage trade internationally including J. Pierpont Morgan, numerous heads of state, and the industrial and financial elite. In 1847 the firm moved to large premises on Bond Street that they have occupied to this day, and in 1862 received their first recognition from Her Majesty Queen Victoria in the form of a Royal Warrant.
The present piece must have been one of the first pieces produced following this recognition.
The quality of this piece is extraordinary.
London, England, retailed by Asprey, 1863.