An excellent example of an actual “treasure chest” from the 17th century, this heavy iron strong box possesses artistic touches which enrich its presence. Made of the heaviest iron construction by European craftsmen, often Prussian or Germanic, these chests were sold to the sailing nations, including Spain, Portugal, France, the Netherlands and of course, England. Used to transport and secure gold, silver, documents and other valuables, once loaded and locked, it would be incredibly difficult to move. For dramatic effect, this one has some scattered “doubloons and gold bars” of metals that are less-than-precious and some coin sacks.
Impressively artistic inside and out, this box has a presence which is eye- catching. Its exterior has a hard edged presence in iron with hand-forged twisted iron beckets at each end to carry the locking chest. The large key fits the lock in the center of the lid, hidden under the swivelled panel, and triggers the unusual design of 7 striker bolts which are the chest’s primary security. The interior locking mechanism is accented with Floral Rosettes and stamp-patterned iron leaves. There is an additional locking internal compartment with key and a false escutcheon on the face of the chest, between the pair of vertical iron hasps which would hold two additional padlocks. Once a portable safe, this box is now itself a treasure.
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