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Mortars and pestles are very popular items that grace country kitchens in style lending a terrific look sprinkled amongst our treenware collections……but I bet you don’t have a wall box that was meant to be the “keeper” of these spice helpers. This next offering is very unique, fabulous and hard to find so if you are interested I would not hesitate to call this piece your own! This 19th century wall box fashioned from pine has the most terrific form sporting exciting detail accents located on the bottom and upper side areas. And if that is not enough to get your heart racing just look at the divided drawer housed below. The “U” shaped (scoop) detail in the front gives a birds eye view of the mortar and pestle placed on the inside shelf. In this case because I did not have a small spice grinder I substituted it with a pretty round basket and a lone pestle that are included with the wall box. The basket adds beautiful texture to this space whereas a wooden mortar would not show off as well because it would blend in with the surrounding wood as shown in image 26. The two opposing sides near the mortar exhibit a defined curve that faces upward and could accommodate a child’s rolling pin to add even more character to this piece as referenced in images 4, 5 & 24. Of course the drawer is just as cute as a button and is filled with wheat and dried rose hips (included) to add interest and color.
The left side of the wall box is missing a portion of the wooden back near the edge as referenced in images 26, 27 & 28. This mishap must have occurred long ago as the splendid patina matches the rest of this piece without fail. There is appropriate nail bleed throughout and the delicious dark and light color variations comprised on the wooden surface are a gift from “Father Time”! There is also a crack located in the back that does come through to the front near the bottom as shown in images 21, 29 & 30. Minimal wood loss located in the back left area near the bottom edge is worth noting but the area behind it is still in good condition. It appears this loss was limited to the depth of the wood and is therefore not considered a complete loss as shown in image 21!
The pronounced curved detail displayed on the edges in double form (front and back, see image 25), near the bottom area may have Pennsylvania Dutch flavor as referenced further in images 19 & 20. The grain in this beautiful wood is not only visual but also can be detected by touch as the subtle ridges consisting of high and low elongated lines are present. It just can’t get any better than this!!
The drawer face exhibits wonderful graining and the small protruding knob seems to defy the common circular form of mainstream pulls. There are some areas of white and blue paint located on the inside of the drawer as shown in images 12, 15 & 16. A tiny portion of wood loss can be seen on the bottom of the drawer as well as a small tight crack as referenced in image 17. Appropriate nail bleed can be found throughout the drawer.
The basket acting as a “make-do” mortar is in good condition with just a small area of material loss to report limited to the top edge as shown in image 34. The hues in the weave are a pleasing dark nutmeg with pretty maple highlights lending spectacular contrast. This is a tightly woven piece exhibiting raised coiled areas on the inside as referenced in images 36 & 37.
The small pestle sports nice grain and possesses a slight two toned appearance, lighter area half way down cascading to the bottom while the top where the handle is located gently transitions into a darker hue as shown in image 39. There are areas where dark spots are present on the handle as well as on the sides as shown in images 41, 42 & 43. A couple chips can be found on the bottom edge of the pestle as well as exhibiting a lighter color around the outside diameter due to frequent use of grinding.
There is an elongated hole located at the top so this piece can be hung safely on the wall and oh what a statement it will make! You better hide it when your friends visit especially if they have the same taste you do otherwise it might end up in their home! LOL! Enjoy!
Overall height is 16 ¼” from the top of the wooden circle above the hanging hole to the bottom middle outward curve. Box itself measures 13 ½” tall and is 3 ½” deep. Pocket area where the mortar rests measures 5 ¼” across (right to left), measures 6” tall (just below the hanging hole) and measures 3” deep. Drawer measures 5 ¼” across (right to left), stands almost 2” tall and measures 3 ¼” (front to back). Drawer Division area inside on right measures 1 ¾” across while the left side measures almost 2” across and is 2 ¼” deep (front to back). Basket stands 2 ¼” tall, measures 4 ¼” across the top opening (right to left) and measures 2 ¾” across the bottom (right to left). Pestle measures 5 ½” tall, measures 1” across the top (handle) and measures almost 1 ¼” across the bottom.
~Freight (Standard Mail) included, however Insurance is optional and can be purchased @ checkout ~ within the continental U.S.