1920s French Walnut Musical Jewellery Box

( JB615 )
SOLD ~ Please contact us if you’re looking for a similar box and we will endeavour to source one for you!

Lovely antique French musical jewellery box dating to the 1920s. Made of beautiful figured Walnut. The interior has a combination of beautiful original watered silk linings and a new cream velvet panel and coverings.

1920s French Walnut Musical Jewellery Box

  FREE UK NEXT DAY DELIVERY.  We Ship Worldwide.

This is a lovely early 20th century musical jewellery box. It is made of Walnut and was made in France in the 1920s. The interior has been partially refurbished and has some of its existing beautiful silk linings.

The Exterior

This box is made of beautifully figured Walnut. The lid has a lovely inlaid brass cartouche and ebonised edges which contrast beautifully against the Walnut. The cartouche is blank and can be engraved with a name/initials and/or a date if desired. A jeweller or key cutter offers engraving services.

The box has a complementary inlaid brass escutcheon to the keyhole and complementary brass feet.

The box is complete with its original brass stop hinges that hold the lid upright. It also has its original quality French lock and key. Details of the lock are given below.

The bottom of the box has a new felt covering. 

The Interior

The interior has been partially beautifully refurbished by ourselves. It has its original beautiful watered silk linings to the inside of the lid, interior walls, and the two small compartments. The silk is a beautiful deep salmon pink shade.

The base of the larger single compartment has a new padded cream velvet panel. The padding provides cushioned protection for jewellery.

There is a lovely shaped flap to the inside of the lid which was designed to hold treasured photos and letters. This flap plus the cover of the musical movement (rear right) have been recovered with the same cream velvet. The velvet has a beautiful soft feel.

The box comes with an endearing old handwritten French note which is original to this box. Its text translates to '... and to open the box at your side, it is to find there at the bottom much more than hope'.

The Musical Movement

The box has a quality Reuge musical movement. This is in very good condition and plays the tune beautifully. The music stops as it should, when the lid is closed or when the movement has fully unwound. We have not been able to decipher the tune.

Operating The Musical Movement

The movement is operated via the winding key on the bottom of the box. Four turns of the key are sufficient to play the tune in full.

About French Locks

French locks have an excellent locking mechanism, designed to deter thieves from stealing the contents of a box! They were cleverly designed so that its key could be turned TWICE to both lock/unlock the box. The owner would hope that an intruder would be unaware of this secret mechanism and believe the lock to be faulty when it did not open upon one turn! The lock can however be operated with just one turn if desired.

Notes on Vintage Musical Movements and Locks

As with all musical boxes, care should be taken not to overwind the key. Overwinding will result in the movement malfunctioning.

We would like to make you aware that vintage locks and movements occasionally malfunction. They are already very old and so will naturally have some wear from age and use.

We are not responsible for locks or movements that malfunction from further age and use once boxes are purchased. Neither are we responsible for movements that malfunction from overwinding. Please ensure the lock and movement are still working as soon as you receive your box. They will be checked again prior to postage.

You can view our full returns policy which includes locks and movements, by visiting our Payments And Returns page.


This box is in very fair condition for its 100 plus years of age. There is a 'smile' (gap) between the lid and body, just on the right-hand side of the box. This does affect the good working function of the lock, you just need to ensure that the right-hand side of the lid is pressed down before locking/unlocking the box.

The Walnut and ebonised finish is lovely overall with just light wear/surface scratches that are commensurate with age and honest use.

The original remaining silk linings are in good condition with only minor fraying around the very edges. The velvet panel and coverings, being new, are in immaculate condition.


Please use the following measurements to ensure the box is the right size for your requirements.

Length:  22.3cm
Width:   16.2cm
Height:    5.5cm

Interior Large Compartment:

14.6 by 13.9cm with a 2.3cm depth.

Small Side Compartments x 2:

5.0 by 3.0cm.


This box will be posted FREE within the UK by Royal Mail Next Day Special Delivery.

International postage is £25 by Royal Mail International Tracked and/or Signed For postage. Delivery is fast, within 3-5 working days to Europe and 5-7 working days to the rest of the world. Delivery may be longer depending on the speed of your local postal service and/or if your package has to go through customs.

Customs and VAT fees

International customers are responsible for paying any applicable customs duties, customs clearance/handling fees and/or VAT. These fees are NOT included in the prices of our boxes or our postage fees.

Please visit our Orders & Delivery page for further details.

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