Victorian silver carnation flower vinaigrette

Victorian silver carnation flower vinaigrette

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An exceptionally good quality and quite rare antique silver vinaigrette, cast in the form of a carnation, bud and leaves. Within the flower is the hinged cover and beneath the gilded hinged vinaigrette is a hand pierced grill. Stockwell has used impressive skills in making this piece.

Vinaigrettes, popular from the late 18th century through the mid 19th century, were small containers used for holding aromatic substances, usually dissolved in vinegar. A tiny piece of sponge, soaked in the liquid, was contained beneath a grill or perforated cover.

The vinaigrette was originally used by both men and women, but by the 1820s it was almost exclusively a feminine accessory. Carried in a pocket, or suspended from a chatelaine, it was used to mask unsanitary odours and for direct inhalation of restorative vapours. Since one never knew when emotion or tight lacing would overcome one, the vinaigrette needed to be near at hand and its aromatics quickly accessible. The hinged lid allowed it to be flipped open, like a snuff box, with the flick of a finger.


Height 120 mm / 4 34"
Width 50 mm / 2 "
Weight 82 g (2.64 troy ozs)