Charles Duron (Pont-à-Mousson 1814-1872 Paris), one of the most prominent French goldsmiths and enamellers of the Second Empire, specialised in enamelled gold and hardstone works of art. For the objects he presented at the Parisian World Exhibitions of 1855 and 1867, he was rewarded with Gold Medals. Among his clients were the Rothschilds and the Marquess of Hertford. Howard Ricketts (Objects of Vertu, London, 1971, pp. 88-90) illustrates a hardstone tazza with enamelled gold mounts by him and explains: "The 1867 Exhibition of Paris however saw two main streams of revived styles - Louis XVI and Renaissance. The first was inspired by the Empress Eugénie who identified herself with Marie Antoinette. The Renaissance, on the other hand, was revived mainly by the new 'art collector'. It was a time of 'Art Treasures' Exhibitions, in which the heirlooms of old families were shown to the public for the first time. As a result possessions became an important element in the minds of the emergent middle classes and the art of the Renaissance goldsmiths was sought after. When the supply dried up the Paris goldsmiths supplied substitutes. One of the most distinguished was Charles Duron [...]. His works are very distinguished and display an unusually delicate understanding of original techniques and also a fluency of interpretation of the 16th century designs."