Royal Persian Gem-Set Match Safe with Diamonds Rubies and Emeralds
Our fabulous gem-set gold match case of Persian origin, dates from the first or second quarter of the 20th century and features numerous diamonds, rubies and emeralds. 1 1/2 by 2 3/8 inches. 3.8 oz, 3.46 troy oz, 111 gm. The most extravagant one of its kind we have seen in our 20 years in business!
Inscription in Farsi on lid translates to "present from workers of Tabriz match making factory." On the reverse is an engraving of the Momtaz Match Company, established in Tabriz in 1921 by Haj Mohammad Rahim Khoei and Haj Mohammad Baqher Khoei. The inscription beneath reads "Momtaz match making factory"
On the inside of the lid are the stamped assay marks for Tabriz (above) and Van (below), the Kurdish-populated city in eastern Turkey's Van Province on the eastern shore of Lake Van, for centuries known for their production of fine silver and gold pieces.
Inside the case is an old (likely original) paper match case with fine printed designs. On front it reads "Momtaz Matches" with "Iran" and "Tabriz" to the left and right of the central design within laurel wreaths, with the Islamic years "1300-1340" below, corresponding to the years 1881-1921 in Western calendar. On the rear of the paper case is a fine rendering of the Palace of Darius I, also known as the Tachara or Tachar Chateau, in Persepolis, Iran. Darius the Great was the third Persian King of Kings of the Achaemenid Empire who reigned from 522 BC until his death in 486 BC. The inscription above the ruins translates to "Fars Pool" (or possibly Palace?), referring to the Fars province where the site resides, about 70 km northeast of Shiraz.