Upcoming Auctions and Events

Global notice COVID-19 Important notice
A GEORGE III BRASS TOBACCO OR 'HONOR' BOX
VARIOUS PROPERTIES
A GEORGE III BRASS TOBACCO OR 'HONOR' BOX

BY RICH'S, LATE 18TH CENTURY

Details
A GEORGE III BRASS TOBACCO OR 'HONOR' BOX
By Rich's, late 18th Century
The rectangular case with a fixed bail handle, the top with two locking and hinged ends enclosing compartments, one end with a coin slot and plunger, on ball feet, with the maker's mark RICH'S PATENT
7in. (18cm.) high, 9½in. (24cm.) long, 4¾in. (12cm.) deep
Provenance
With Stair & Company, Inc. New York.

Lot Essay

Honor boxes were commonly found in inns and pubs as early coin-operated vending machines. An English penny was inserted into the slot, depressing the plunger and then opening the opposing door to a tobacco compartment. The patron was then 'on his honor' to take only a pipeful of tobacco. The side with the slot collected the coins, with the keys cut to open one way to the coin compartment and the other to the tobacco compartment. These boxes were commonly engraved with the owner's or firm's name and dates. Similar boxes are illustrated in P., N. and H. Schiffer, The Brass Book: American, English and European Fifteenth Century through 1850, 1978, p. 114, figs. A-C.
;

More from Important English Furniture including a Selection of

View All
View All