Art/ Collection/ Art Object

Tobacco box

17th–18th century
5 1/8 x 2 3/4 in. (13.0 x 7.0 cm)
Credit Line:
Bequest of Mary Mandeville Johnston, from the collection of Mr. and Mrs. Edward W. S. Johnston, 1914
Accession Number:
Not on view
The box is oval; the lid shows an interior scene framed by brick walls. Two seated women, each with a glass, raise a toast to each other’s health. Inscribed below: Een glas bier is ons plasier (A glass of beer is our pleasure).

The underside depicts an almost identical scene with women similarly posed. Details of the clothing differs somewhat. Inscribed below: Bij de wijn kan men vrolijck sijn (With wine one can be merry). This box was most likely made for a female smoker.

With lined rims, molded edges, and leaf-scroll borders. The sides have chevron decoration.
Inscription: Engraved on lid: EEN GLAS BIER IS ONS PLASIER (Dutch, trans.: A glass of beer is our pleasure); engraved on base: BIJ DE WIJN KAN MEN VROLIJCK SIJN (Dutch, trans.: By the wine cup one can be merry)
Mary Mandeville Johnston , New York (until d. 1914; bequeathed to MMA)
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