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Matchsafe (USA), ca. 1880

This is a Matchsafe. It was produced by Tiffany and Co.. It is dated ca. 1880 and we acquired it in 1980. Its medium is hammered silver, copper, brass. It is a part of the Product Design and Decorative Arts department.

Tiffany & Co.’s artistic director Edward C. Moore owned Japanese objects including sword guards with mixed metals and hammered surfaces that he reproduced. Moore also gained knowledge about Japanese design from those objects that Christopher Dresser shipped from Japan to Louis Comfort Tiffany as a study collection in 1877. This matchsafe displays Japanese-inspired mixed metals and has a beetle as its lid lift.

It is credited Gift of Stephen W. Brener and Carol B. Brener.

  • Vase (USA)
  • silver, gold, copper, and mixed metals ("mokume" technique).
  • 1976-58-1-a/f
  • Tsuba
  • Gift of Dr. Walter Leo Hildburgh.
  • 1932-16-70

Its dimensions are

H x W x D: 6.3 x 3.6 x 1.6cm (2 1/2 x 1 7/16 x 5/8in.)

It has the following markings

Stamped on reverse bezel: "TIFFANY & Co 5611 Makers 9921"; stamped on side bezel: "M" ; stamped on front bezel: "STERLING SILVER AND OTHER METALS 1153".

Cite this object as

Matchsafe (USA), ca. 1880; Produced by Tiffany and Co. (United States); hammered silver, copper, brass; H x W x D: 6.3 x 3.6 x 1.6cm (2 1/2 x 1 7/16 x 5/8in.); Gift of Stephen W. Brener and Carol B. Brener; 1980-14-1296

This object was previously on display as a part of the exhibition Passion for the Exotic: Japonism.

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<ref name=CH>{{cite web |url= |title=Matchsafe (USA), ca. 1880 |author=Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum |accessdate=23 March 2019 |publisher=Smithsonian Institution}}</ref>