This fabulous and richly carved oak strong box most likely belonged to a 19th century ship’s captain and was used for storing money and valuables. It is of a smaller size than the type used in country houses. It is made from very thick English oak which is jointed and fixed with handmade steel clout nails then further reinforced with straps and braces made from thick wrought steel with hinged hasps originally used for locking with two sturdy padlocks. Although this piece is very functional for its purpose this rare piece is also very decorative. It is deeply carved with numerous figures and it is further enhanced with leafy foliate panels. At each end, there is a hinged substantially cast brass carrying handle. The lid opens to reveal a plain interior with a central hole in its base which would have been used to bolt the box to the floor for security. This interesting piece dates to the second quarter of the 19th century. It is in good condition and is unusual in this small size.
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