This box is an interesting testimony to the conchyliomania during the 18th century. The period of its manufacture coincides with a particularly attractive period of trading in, and collecting of, shells during the reign of King Louis XV. In 1736, the famous marchand-mercier E.-F. Gersaint published a sale catalogue of a collection of shells he had acquired in the Netherlands. Other Olivia Porphyria boxes are illustrated in A. K. Snowman, Eighteenth Century Gold Boxes of Europe, Woodbridge, 1990, pl. 347 and 446.