This jewelled gold-mounted nephrite card case, circa 1900, came under the hammer at Christie’s Russian sale in June 2010. The property of a ‘European Royal Family’, it made £10,000 including commission.
The rectangular hardstone body with rounded sides has applied reeded mounts, the upper suspending a circular thumb-piece set with a cabochon sapphire. 3¼ in. (8.2 cm.) long.
Russia has a large resource of both green and white Nephrite jade and its artist have been transforming it into beautiful objects for many years. In vogue towards the end of the 19th century, the workshop of Carl Fabergé in St. Petersburg, produced many beautiful nephrite objects including ‘The Empire Nephrite Egg’ (the location of which is now unknown).