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Enamel Snuffbox in the Shape of a Pug

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Unknownca. 1750Germanyenamel on copperL 7 cm

This enamel snuffbox in the shape of a pug was a popular gift among the members of the Order of the Mops. The secret Masonic Lodge, founded in 1740, had chosen the pug as its symbol, due to its loyalty and steadiness, which corresponded to the ideals of the Order. The East-Asian dog breed enjoyed great popularity in the 18th century, when the Chinoiserie wave was at its peak. Not only did pugs appear in the form of snuffboxes, but were also highly popular as free-standing porcelain figures.