A pietra dura casket, Florentine, 17th Century.

The sides and lid of the casket are composed of pietra dura plaques of birds, mounted later in a gilt-bronze frame with lion couchant feet, 24cm by 24.8cm square.

A bill in the Burghley Archives records its acquisition from Kensington Lewis, Silversmith & Jeweller of St James’ Street, London dated April 3rd 1827:… ‘A superb Florentine Mosaic Jewell Casket mounted with richly chased and gilt Or-Molu. £70-7-0’.

The casket appears in the 1854 Burghley Inventory: ‘Blue Drawing Room…..A Square Pietra Dura Chest or Box mounted in Or Molu bought 1826 on a stand’.

The stand is still extant, though not shown here.


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