An Important Archive Relating to Field Marshall Sir John French

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Date of Auction: 14th December 2006

Sold for £310

Estimate: £200 - £250

A most unusual Arts & crafts style oak presentation casket, probably originally containing a freedom or an address of welcome, the top lid having ornate applied enamelled plaque bearing the arms, crest and motto of French, brass furniture in the form of strapwork, square catches secured by sliding bolts attached by chains, the brass corner mounts decorated with silver and enamel scallop shells and fish, the sides additionally decorated with attached chains which form the handles, the casket stands on octagonal brass feet, signs of old polishing, one bolt and chain an old replacement, otherwise good condition, and an interesting item. £200-250


The arms are for French impaling Selby-Lowndes, for he married in 1880, Eleonora Selby-Lowndes, the motto ‘Malo Mori quam foedari’ (‘I would rather die than be dishonoured’) and the crest, a dolphin embowed, are also correct for French.