Rémond, Lamy & Co. à Genève, 76 x 22 mm, 133 g, circa 1804
A distinctive Swiss gold enamel powder box with allegorical depiction "The Perfect Minister" in a fitted green morocco case, the interior cover stamped "By appointment to H.M. the Queen Goldsmiths & Crown Jewellers Garrard & Co. Ltd., 112 Regent Street W1"
Case: 18K gold, maker's punch mark "RL&C" (Rémond, Lamy & Co.), later French control marks.
Round box, base and sides with lavish engine-turned pattern and translucent blue enamelling framed by Champlevé borders. The lid has a polychrome enamel medallion painted in the manner of Jean-Abraham Lissignol with an allegorical scene of the perfect minister: an old man with a white beard, wearing a toga and holding an open book, represents counsel. By his side is the goddess of war Minerva, symbolizing wisdom and fortitude and a woman holding a mirror, personifying prudence. In the background a young man putting a finger to his lips, represents silence.
The subject symbolizes the glory of the Chief Minister of France Cardinal Jules Mazarin (1602-1661), as meaningful as any portrait.
The partnership of Remond, Lamy & Cie. was only in existence between 1801 and 1804.
A gold enamel musical box with the same subject is held at the Patek Philippe Museum in Geneva. It is illustrated and described in: "Patek Philippe Museum" by Dr. Peter Friess, vol. IV - The Emergence of the Portable Watch, Geneva 2016, page 98.