1830. Rome: Paoletti Impronte, c. 1830.
Book-shaped box with upper and lower compartments lined with green coated paper, each containing 12 plaster cameos, 24 in total; each facing pastedown bearing a handwritten key to names. Box is three quarter vellum, backstrip gilt with gilt-stamped leather label (lacking one); boards rubbed, small numeral "4" inked on backstrip, pastedowns foxed, all cameos present and in fine condition.
§ A lovely example of a souvenir collection of cameos, typical of those produced for travellers to Italy in the 19th century. Several workshops in Rome made these collectible boxes fashioned to look like books. Tourists could choose from many different cameo sets, for example Roman emperors, classical authors, or famous sculptures. This set is a charmingly eccentric collection of famous men: the front compartment containing Romans including Augustus, Seneca, Cicero, Virgil, Caesar, and others; the back compartment containing a few more Romans along with French authors (including Fénélon, Cardinal Richelieu, and La Fontaine), as well as George Washington, Lord Byron, and Shakespeare. Item #122736