This small, attractive box is of silver and is decorated on all sides with enamel work that is typical of the Berber people of Algeria’s Greater Kabylia Region. The enamel work is in light green, blue and yellow.
The hinged lid is also decorated with a central, domed, lozenge-shaped bakelite plaque in a serrated box setting. The bakelite emulates coral and this dates to the box to around 1930.
The lid is also decorated with prominent applied granulation work.
The base is of metal and the underside is lined with a waxed canvas.
Examples of enamelled silver Berber items are illustrated in Daalder (2009, p. 399), and in Seiwert (2009, p. 95).
Daalder, T., Ethnic Jewellery and Adornment: Australia, Oceania, Asia, Africa, Ethnic Art Press/Macmillan, 2009.
Seiwert, W.D., Jewellery from the Orient: Treasures from the Bir Collection, Arnoldsche Art Publishers, 2009.
Splendeurs du Maroc, Musee Royal de l’Afrique Central, Belgium, 1998.