Be the first to guess what the pictured item is by leaving a comment below. If you have your own whatsit, our editors can include it in a future post. Please send an email to and attach a clear picture, the size and any markings. Hopefully, we will be able to identify it for our readers!

The pictured item is 20 by 12 by 13 inches.

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Photo: D.L. Straight Auctions

10 responses to “It’s #whatsitwednesday!”

  1. says:

    Answer from Kovels: Pictured is a wooden puzzle box with parquetry, inlaid geometric patterns.

  2. limerickey says:

    I’m with Mikee. The first thought that popped into my head was Encyclopedia Britannica.

  3. ButternutK says:

    Looks like a puzzle box with a secret method to open.. I have one that looks similar but is much smaller.

  4. flash472002 says:

    Looks like a boxed set of books, but I can’t identify what books they are.

  5. TRay says:

    Wow, mikee is so precise in his description, so thorough, he must be an expert fabricator…in the way hookman and myself throw around the bull. Therefore, my work here is done.

  6. jvdl says:

    It’s a thing-a-jig ??????

  7. krd54 says:

    It is a puzzle box with a hidden key. I have several just like this.

  8. rulamarr1960 says:

    It appears to be a puzzle box designed as a library bookshelf.

  9. mikee says:

    This is the deluxe boxed and leather bound set of the abridged version of Encyclopedia Britannica. Box was used for the initial issue of this version in 1900, making it highly sought after by collectors. Openings on sides allow user to choose correct volume without searching, but it appears that the gold leaf identification for this set has faded. Inset marquetry design of lid is literally a work of art that has not been seen before or since. Whole collection with the box is quite rare.

  10. madeet says:

    Possibly an old-time file Box.

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