A courtly silvered and gilt brass mantled Strongbox with Clockwork

Prunktruhe mit Uhrwerk gefertigt für Fridericus Rex zu Preussen, Kunsthandel Mühlbauer

A courtly silvered and gilt brass mantled Strongbox with Clockwork

A courtly silvered and gilt brass mantled Strongbox with Clockwork

Made for Fridericus Rex, King of Prussia

Berlin, 1750
In the Royal workshops by court goldsmith Peter Fromery and court gunsmith Christian Ludwig von der Fecht (1710 – 1753).

58 × 56 × 36 cm
(22 × 23.2 × 14.2 inch)

Signed and dated: “Feinschmiede P. Fromeri 1750”, “Büchsenmacher C.L. Fecht Berlin“.

further illustrations

The silvered and gilt brass mantled Strongbox with Clockwork

The exterior of the courtly strongbox is elaborately mounted with chased and engraved silvered and gilt brass, decorated with foliate strapwork with inserted rocaille cartouches. The domed lid is mounted by a covered box with clock movement and two dials flanked by volutes with the signature of the artists: “Feinschmiede P. Fromeri 1750”, “Büchsenmacher C.L.Fecht Berlin”.

The lid crowned by the gilt Prussian Eagle, when opened reveals the signed portrait medaillon of the owner “Fridericus Rex zu Preussen”.
The pedestal underneath with four Prussian Grenadier Soldiers to the edges – the right one can be turned and then a mechanism, connected with the three others, reveals a hidden keyhole to open the domed lid.
Inside a second keyhole inserted in a gilt rocaille cartouche becomes visible and an extremely complicated gilt steel-cut key enables to open the sophisticated locking mechanism with twenty-two shooting bolts.
The snap which activates the lock and the mechanism, covered by a gilt ajouré lockplate within a central medallion showing two putti.

The inner is covered with its original red velvet and refers to the original intended use of the strongbox – to store safely the State seals of the Prussian King.

Provenance
  • Collection Edgar Mannheimer, Zurich
  • Private collection, Germany