The box represents great temptation. "Open me" it says. The human cannot resist it; its charm is overwhelming. So too, is the charm of this remarkable book, in which antique boxes and tea caddies - along with the people who inspired, made, and used them - dance gracefully through the pages. The reader is guided through the aesthetic, cultural, and social influences of the years covered, accumulating a deep understanding of the form, decoration, and purpose of eighteenth and nineteenth century boxes. The extensive text covers wooden, tortoiseshell, ivory, papier m*^ach*/e, and lacquer boxes. There are chapters on Anglo Indian, Scottish, Irish, Penwork, Straw work, and Tunbridge ware boxes, as well as on boxes made for special purposes. Captions include complete descriptions, values, and circa dates for all boxes shown. The 905 images include original drawings, magnificent photographs of complete pieces, and close-ups illustrating the structure and decoration of boxes. This is an indispensable companion for box collectors and reflects fascinating information about cultural forces that shaped the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries.