Or are you looking for Search the Archives?

Please complete the form to email this item.



  • Place of origin:

    Dresden (probably, made)

  • Date:

    ca. 1750 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Taddel, Heinrich, born 1715 (workshop of)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Carved quartz, gold, silver and burgau shell

  • Credit Line:

    The Rosalinde and Arthur Gilbert Collection on loan to the Victoria and Albert Museum, London

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

The decoration used here was inspired by oriental originals, on either lacquer or porcelain. Goldsmiths such as Heinrich Taddel (1715-94), whose workshop may have produced this box, had access to such objects through their work at the court in Dresden.

Sir Arthur Gilbert and his wife Rosalinde formed one of the world's great decorative art collections, including silver, mosaics, enamelled portrait miniatures and gold boxes. Arthur Gilbert donated his extraordinary collection to Britain in 1996.

Physical description

A cartouche-shaped, gold-mounted hardstone snuffbox, comprising two panels of quartz encrusted with gold, silver and burgau shell with, on the cover, a Chinese lion-dog and its cub, and, on the base, a still life of Chinese implements and furniture.

Place of Origin

Dresden (probably, made)


ca. 1750 (made)


Taddel, Heinrich, born 1715 (workshop of)

Materials and Techniques

Carved quartz, gold, silver and burgau shell

Marks and inscriptions

Restricted warrany mark for gold, Paris, May 10, 1838, onward
On the bezel


Length: 8.9 cm, Width: 6.7 cm, Height: 2.9 cm

Object history note

Provenance: D.S. Lavender, London.

Descriptive line

Gold-mounted quartz snuffbox inlaid with gold, silver and burgau shell; possibly the workshop of Heinrich Taddel, probably Dresden, about 1750

Bibliographic References (Citation, Note/Abstract, NAL no)

Habsburg-Lothringen, Géza von. Gold boxes from the collection of Rosalinde and Arthur Gilbert. R. & A. Gilbert, 1983. 125 p., ill. Cat. no. 35, p. 74. ISBN. 0961039809.
Snowman, A. Kenneth. Eighteenth century gold boxes of Europe, rev. ed., Woodbridge: Antique Collectors' Club, 1990, pl. 647. ISBN. 1851490728
Truman, Charles.The Gilbert collection of gold boxes, Vol. I. Los Angeles (Los Angeles County Museum of Art) 1991, cat. no. 62, pp. 184-5. ISBN.0875871623
Zech, Heike. Gold Boxes. Masterpieces from the Rosalinde and Arthur Gilbert Collection. London: V&A Publishing, 2015, pp. 68-69, no. 18. ISBN 987-1-85177-840-9

Labels and date

5. Snuffbox with Chinese lion-dog and cub, about 1750

Museum no. Loan:Gilbert.402-2008 [16/11/2016]
Snuffbox with Chinese lion-dog and cub
About 1750

Probably Dresden, Germany;
possibly workshop of Heinrich Taddel (1715–94)
Gold, silver, quartz and burgau shell
Museum no. Loan:Gilbert.402-2008 [2009]


Quartz; Gold; Silver; Burgau shell; Hardstone


Carving; Inlay (process)

Subjects depicted

Lion dog; Chinoiserie; Still life; Animals; Cub


Metalwork; Containers; Personal accessories


Metalwork Collection

Large image request

Please confirm you are using these images within the following terms and conditions, by acknowledging each of the following key points:

Please let us know how you intend to use the images you will be downloading.