Unique Italian Inlaid Antique Jewellery Box From Sorrento

( JB575 )
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Fabulous unique antique box from Sorrento in Southern Italy. Circa 1880. Lovingly repurposed and lined by our very skilled box restorer. The interior has a new storage tray and a beautiful bespoke drawer. It also has new satin linings and padded satin panels. The box is made from solid Olivewood. It has a stunning marquetry inlaid panel and a high-quality continental lock.

Unique Italian Inlaid Antique Jewellery Box From Sorrento

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This is a superb high-quality antique box from Sorrento in Southern Italy. It dates to 1880 and is made from solid Olivewood. Our restorer has refurbished and repurposed this box to give it a much more practical use. It originally had a single deep compartment only, for the storage of vanity jars or similar. It has now been lovingly converted into a very unique jewellery box! Further details about the conversion are given below, in the interior's description.

The Exterior

This box is made of solid Olivewood that has beautiful figuration. It has a stunning marquetry inlaid panel on the lid that is one of the finest we have ever seen on a box of this type! The inlay consists of several colourful varieties of wood and is set beautifully flush into the Olivewood.

The entire exterior has a smooth polished finish.

The box has its original brass hinges. Those to the lid are quality stop hinges which hold the lid upright.

The box has a stylish drop-down front that conceals a newly made bespoke drawer. Further details of this are given below.

The box has its original brass continental lock in the drop-down front of the box. This secures both the lid and the front. The front cannot be opened unless the box is unlocked. Details of the continental lock are given below.

There is a lovely inlaid kite-shaped escutcheon to the keyhole.

There is some lovely very old pencilled writing on the bottom of the box. We have not removed this as it is a wonderful part of the box's history!

The Interior

The interior has a new fixed storage tray at the top (fronted by solid Olivewood) and a fabulous new bespoke drawer in the space beneath. The drawer is made from period reclaimed Olivewood and its front was taken from a small 1930s trinket box. This beautiful front is in the form of a volume of nine books. Each book has hand-painted Roman Numerals. A Victorian brass loop handle has been added to the front of the drawer. This lovely little handle was made during the same period as this box. The little 1930s trinket box was also from Sorrento but was sadly beyond restoration. It is wonderful to know that at least a part of this box, lives on in this converted antique box!

The bases of the tray and drawer have new padded satin panels and their interior walls have new satin linings. The satin is a gorgeous teal blue shade. The padding to the panels provides cushioned protection for jewellery.

The Continental Lock

This beautiful box has a superb continental lock which was designed to deter thieves from stealing its contents. It was cleverly designed so that its key could be turned TWICE, to both lock and unlock the box. The idea was that an intruder would believe the lock to be faulty when it did not open upon just one turn of the key! The lock can, however, be operated with just one turn of the key if desired.

Notes On Antique Locks

We would like to make you aware that antique locks can occasionally malfunction. They are already very old and so will naturally have some wear from age and use. We are not responsible for locks that malfunction from further age and use once boxes are purchased. Please ensure the lock is still working as soon as you receive your box. It will be checked again prior to posting.

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

About Olivewood

Olivewood has a distinctive grain and rich colour which gives it a beautiful appearance. It has characteristic brown and yellow streaks which make for a beautiful contrast. These features make it a sought after wood for decorative items such as jewellery boxes.

Olivewood is also favoured for its hardness. It is a strong durable wood with a fairly high density and it takes well to cutting and polishing.

The Olive tree primarily grows in the coastal regions of the Mediterranean. Its wood has been used for many years by Italian box makers in particular. It is also a favoured wood in areas of the Holy Lands such as Jerusalem.


This superb antique box has sound structure and is still in very good condition.

All of the marquetry inlay is present and secure.

The Olivewood has some minor superficial light scratches and tiny stress lines. This is commensurate with age and honest use.

The interior satin, being new, is in immaculate condition.


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

Length:   20.0cm
Width:     10.8cm
Height:      9.9cm

Interior Top Storage Tray:

17.0 by 7.8cm with a 2.3cm depth.

Interior Drawer:

16.3 by 6.0cm with a 3.5cm depth


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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