A SUPERB AND VERY LARGE
antique trompe-l’oeil silver cigar box – COLORADO
made in St. Petersburg, Russia in 1879, the lid and sides superbly engraved to imitate woodgrain and tobacco paper tax bands.
Height 2 3/8 in. (6 cm), width 5 3/8 in. (13,6 cm), length 8 1/4 in. (21 cm).
Weight 30,6 oz. (867 g).
Silver cigar boxes engraved to imitate original wooden boxes were fashionable in Russia from circa 1870s to the early 20th century. The earlier boxes from 1870s-1890s, in general, are of superior quality to later pieces. Cigar boxes of such size and weight are rare.
The center of the lid is engraved with the French brand name H.UPMANN FLOR, partially covered with crossed Russian tax bands.
The front panel is engraved with the cigar name COLORADO. Both, the brand name on the lid and the cigar’s name, are engraved to imitate letters burnt into wood.
Engraved Russian inscription on the tax bands reads: “IMPORTED TOBACCO.”
Marked with 84 zolotniks Imperial Russian silver standard (875 silver) with St Petersburg assayer’s initials of Ivan Yevstigneev and date 1879, master’s initials JB, and later French control mark for imported foreign silver.