29. Hard Stone and Silver Gilt Cane -Ca. 1900 -The elegant knob is fashioned of Nephrite in a well-proportioned, stretching and plain Milord shape and embellished with two inset, facetted rock crystal washers. The spinach green handle comes with its engine turned, silver gilt collar with cross band edges struck with an unidentified Russian hallmark besides a “935” for the precious metal title and a well figured snake wood shaft and a horn ferrule. A characteristic sense of luxury shines through this exquisite walking stick which embodies the romance and splendor that was Imperial Russia and forwards a taste of the follies of the Romanov days. -H. 3 ½” x 1”, O.L. 38 ¾” -$1,500-$2,000 -A gemstone known for over 7000 years jade was actually proved in 1863 in France to consist of two separate, distinct minerals, namely Jadeite and Nephrite. However telling the two apart is very difficult, and this may be the reason why the word Jade is used as a description of both. Nephrite comes in several qualities, although the best is rare and very expensive. It was one of Fabergé’s favorite stones and embodies the epitome of Russian taste. -Piratinera Guianensis or snake wood belongs to the family of Moraceae and originates in tropical South America. It is a truly exotic species and probably one of the most difficult woods to find. Typically, it is a very small tree, and only shows the wonderful reddish brown heartwood with speckles of black appearing as hieroglyphics or snakeskin markings in a small quantity of the wood, and then rarely evenly spread across the entire face of the board. Its markings which resemble those of a snakeskin, give this small, relatively rare timber its name. Snake wood is dense, extremely heavy and hard, brittle and splits easily. It becomes very smooth when finished and has natural polish.