A Franco-Flemish kingwood oyster-veneered strong-box, late 17th Century.

The box, which sits on four brass ball and claw feet, has a rising lid and fall-front and contains hidden drawers.

The exterior has elaborate brass hinges and hasps, 39cm wide.

It is of a kind used by travellers in the 17th Century and appears to be purely decorative, but was in fact, incredibly difficult to break into or steal.

It has a strong lock at the centre and there are two bolts concealed in the sides, so that it could be screwed into floorboards, or the floor of a carriage when on the road.

The ball and claw feet were almost certainly later additions.

Strong boxes of this kind, with oyster veneering, were luxury items.


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