19th C. Souvenir de Paris Graphoscope Magnifier
Quite unique antique c. 1890s French "Souvenir de Paris" ebonized wood graphoscope. Most likely sold during the Universal Exhibition of Paris, 1889.
A graphoscope was a 19th century device used in parlors in order to enhance the viewing of photographs and text.
This unique piece features a beautiful round magnifying glass in the center, set in a rectangular box of ebonized wood. It's wonderfully carved "Souvenir de Paris" with surrounding vines and leaves. The box opens to a wood interior with a metal arm that can swing up to securely hold the top part of the viewer open. A small hinged easel is attached to the base, enabling the viewing box to stand at an angle. I believe there is an interior piece missing that would have held a card in place for viewing.
When closed, the box measures approx. 8" long by 5" wide by 1-5/8" deep. The magnifier is approximately 3-3/4" diameter.
Overall very good condition with some light wear to the wood.
In one of the photos I've included an example of paper under the glass to give you an idea of display possibilities. Would look quite handsome opened or closed on any desk or table top!