Screw Action Nutcracker in an Openwork Case
Dimensions: length 8.6 cms, diameter 2 cms.
Place of Origin: France.
Date: 18th century.
Present Location: Nutcracker Museum in Vilnius, Lithuania.
A thumbpiece shaped as a heart and an acorn, as a symbol of strength, potential and fertility, attached to the very end of a cage suggest that the nutcracker was most likely given as a gift to a young couple setting up household. Gift utensils, created on the occasion of marriages, were made with great care, especially, but not exclusively, in the north of France and in what today comprises Belgium. The nutcracker is now stored in the Nutcracker Museum in Vilnius, Lithuania. Similar examples can be viewed in the Musée Le Secq des Tournelles in Rouen, France.
Richard J. Wattenmaker, “Objects of Contemplation and Pleasure: Wrought-Iron European Cooking and Fireplace Utensils of the Early Modern Era” in: Antique Tools and Instruments from the Nessi Collection, 5 Continents Editions, 2004, ISBN 88-7439-124-2.