Boxes of this kind were probably designed to hold sweetmeats or comfits with which to freshen the breath. The term bonbonnière, usually used for a box with a detachable cover, does not seem to appear before around 1770 and prior to this date the term boïte à bonbons was used. Two very similar boxes are illustrated in A. K. Snowman, Eighteenth Century Gold Boxes of Europe, Woodbridge, 1990, p. 100, ill. 156 and currently on loan and exhibited at the Victoria and Albert Museum as part of the Sallie and Kenneth Snowman Collection. One is unmarked from Dresden and dated circa 1740, the other is by Jean-François Raveché, Paris, 1743. This French box, now in a private collection, was from the The Elizabeth Parke Firestone Sale, Christie's, New York, 19 November 1982, lot 35. The duc d'Aumont possessed "Deux bonbonnières rondes guillochés de crystal de roche garnies de gorge bec & Charnière d'or" [Two round engine-turned bonbonnières in rock-crystal with rim, thumbpiece and hinge in gold], which were sold after his death in 1782 (Paris, 12 December, 1782, lot 246), C. Truman, The Wallace Collection of Gold Boxes, London, 2013, p. 191.