Firebacks

Manufactured in England

874 results

  1. 537

    pet-m-91.jpg
    335 x 554 mm

    Description: Arched rectangular central panel with bead-and-pellet edging on a broad fillet; nude figure of a man standing on a mound, resting his left hand on a club, a plant to his right, and drapery swags above; arched rectangular border with symmetrical swirls; monogram centre bottom; on top, symmetrical, swirled foliage.

    Notes: The figure is probably of Hercules.

    Copies of this fireback are known.

    Inscription: SHR

    Manufactured: in the late 17th to early 18th century in England.

    Current location: Petworth House, Petworth, West Sussex, England.

    Museum number: NT/PET/M/91 (part of the National Trust museum group)

  2. 523

    petworth_004.jpg
    594 x 554 mm

    Description: Arched rectangular shape; cavetto-moulded edging; figure in mid-17th century armour, sword in belt, riding a prancing horse; initials split, below corners of arch, in front of horse’s head and behind rider’s back.

    Notes: Probably intended to represent Charles I in memoriam, as other firebacks in this style date from the end of the Commonwealth period.

    Copies of this fireback are known.

    Inscription: [C missing] R

    Manufactured: in the mid 17th century in the Weald area of England.

    Current location: Petworth House, Petworth, West Sussex, England.

    Museum number: NT/PET/M/77 (part of the National Trust museum group)

    Citation: Baines, J. M., 1958, Wealden Firebacks (Hastings Museum).

    Citation: Hodgkinson, J. S., 2010, British Cast-Iron Firebacks of the 16th to Mid-18th Centuries (Crawley, Hodgers Books).

    Citation: Lloyd, N., 1925, 'Domestic Ironwork I', Architectural Review, 58, pp. 58-67.

  3. 532

    petworth_012.jpg
    612 x 628 mm

    Description: Arched rectangular shaped with narrow shoulders; fillet edging; date in individual numerals across arch.

    Notes: A smaller version is different in the spacing of the numerals and the proportions of the plate.

    Inscription: 1658

    Manufactured: in 1658 possibly in the Weald area of England.

    Current location: Petworth House, Petworth, West Sussex, England.

    Museum number: NT/PET/M/85 (part of the National Trust museum group)

    Citation: Hodgkinson, J. S., 2010, British Cast-Iron Firebacks of the 16th to Mid-18th Centuries (Crawley, Hodgers Books).

  4. 583

    petworth_062.jpg
    684 x 783 mm

    Description: Arch-shaped, with rounded-arched extension at top; cavetto moulded edge all round; five vertical planklines; arms of the Francis (or Franceis) family of Derbyshire: Argent a Chevron gules between three Eagles displayed of the same; Crest: an eagle displayed on a crowned knight’s helm; initials in bottom corners; date below shield.

    Notes: Probably the arms of Sir Edward Francis, who was Seneschal of the Petworth House estate and took overall charge in 1606 when the 9th Earl of Northumberland was committed to the Tower of London for his alledged involvement in the Gunpowder Plot.

    Copies of this fireback are known.

    Inscription: E 1606 F

    Arms: Sir Edward Francis

    Manufactured: in 1606 probably at Frith Furnace, Northchapel in the Weald area of England.

    Current location: Petworth House, Petworth, West Sussex, England.

    Museum number: NT/PET/M/41.1 (part of the National Trust museum group)

    Citation: Gardner, J. S., 1898, 'Iron Casting in the Weald', Archaeologia, 56, 1, pp. 133-164.

    Citation: Hodgkinson, J. S., 2010, British Cast-Iron Firebacks of the 16th to Mid-18th Centuries (Crawley, Hodgers Books).

  5. 584

    petworth_063.jpg
    920 x 860 mm

    Description: Of unique design; quasi-arched rectangular shape; ribbon border, curled on each side of the neck. Symmetrical arrangement of plant tendrils with acorns, oak leaves, pomegranates and other leaves across the rectangular base; above and centrally placed are the date, over which are the initials either side of a crescent moon, surmounted by an earl’s coronet.

    Notes: The initials, H N, are thought to refer to Henry, 9th Earl of Northumberland, and the date to his release from the Tower of London following his 17 years’ imprisonment for alleged involvement in the Gunpowder Plot.

    Copies of this fireback are known.

    Inscription: H N / 1622

    Manufactured: in 1622 probably at Frith Furnace, Northchapel in the Weald area of England.

    Current location: Petworth House, Petworth, West Sussex, England.

    Museum number: 485698 (part of the National Trust museum group)

    Citation: Hodgkinson, J. S., 2010, British Cast-Iron Firebacks of the 16th to Mid-18th Centuries (Crawley, Hodgers Books).

  6. 585

    petworth_064.jpg
    910 x 756 mm

    Description: Central arched rectangular shape formed of fluted Ionic pilasters supporting a rounded arch, with fillet edging, bearing the date between two flower heads; beneath is a fouled anchor within a circlet of rope gathered into eight loops; a phoenix, its wings displayed and inverted, rises from the flames above the rope; mirrored outside each pilaster, a crouching, naked faun, facing inwards, disgorges a vine with bunches of grapes; above each faun a volute forms the top corner of the plate.

    Notes: The decorative elements of this fireback have yet to be fully interpreted; the vines disgorged from the mouths of the fauns are related to the 'green man' tradition associated with woodland spirits and symbolising resurrection, the latter echoed by the phoenix, though in the form in which they appear on this fireback they may be a purely decorative device. By contrast, the cabled anchor is the badge of the Lord High Admiral who, in 1608, was Charles Howard, 1st Earl of Nottingham (previously Lord Howard of Effingham). A pastiche of this fireback, dated 1633, is also known (no. 1064).

    Copies of this fireback are known.

    Inscription: 1608

    Manufactured: in 1608 in the Weald area of England.

    Current location: Petworth House, Petworth, West Sussex, England.

    Museum number: NT/L/PET/M/117.1 (part of the National Trust museum group)

    Citation: Hodgkinson, J. S., 2010, British Cast-Iron Firebacks of the 16th to Mid-18th Centuries (Crawley, Hodgers Books).

    Citation: Lloyd, N., 1925, 'Domestic Ironwork I', Architectural Review, 58, pp. 58-67.

  7. 924

    pimlico,_gifford mead 01.jpg
    550 x 600 mm

    Description: Canted rectangle; elaborate cavetto moulded edging (top and sides); strapwork shield with a demi-flower at each side, between initials (S only visible); arms quarterly of six, 1st Or two chevronels Gules, on a canton of the last a mullet of the first (Pope); 2nd Argent three bars Gules, on a canton ermine a bend of lozenges of the second (Walshe); 3rd Sable three laurel leaves in bend Or between two bendlets Argent (Waller); 4th Azure a chevron between three crosses Moline Argent (Lansdale); 5th Ermine on a bend Gules three lions’ heads erased Or (Weston); 6th Azure a lion rampant Or supporting a cross patée fitchée of the second (Pichingham).

    Notes: The lower part of the shield is revealed more clearly in another casting. The date above the shield has been inserted before casting and differs slightly from another example of the same back.

    Copies of this fireback are known.

    Inscription: 1625 / S P

    Arms: Pope (Sackevile Pope (b. 1589) of Hendall, in Buxted, Sussex)

    Manufactured: in 1625 in the Weald area of England.

    Current location:, L.T.C. Rolt - Life, Work, Legacy A Joint Ironbridge Gorge Museum Trust / Keele University Conference 9th - 11th May 2024 Ironbridge Gorge Museum, Coalbrookdale, Shropshire Click here for details.

    Citation: Hodgkinson, J. S., 2013, 'A Pope family fireback', Wealden Iron, Bulletin of the Wealden Iron Research Group, 33, pp. 27-31.

  8. 885

    pimlico,_gifford mead 02.jpg
    491 x 755 mm

    Description: Arched rectangular shaped central panel, bead-and-pellet edging, narrow-necked, two-handled urn with flowers and wheat ears issuing therefrom, the vase resting on a wall with stone courses, against which are two small flowers in pots with a stool between; arched rectangular shaped border with fillet edging and symmetrical floral tendrils, a looped 'W' in each shoulder; on top, mirrored leaves, tendrils and wheat ears; inscription along bottom of border.

    Notes: The largest of six flower vase designs in this series. All incorporate the looped 'W' motif which may be intended to identify the pattern maker. The casting is an amalgamation of parts of two firebacks of the same design, the bottom portion from an earlier casting than the top (reduction 2%). The inscription translates as 'God is our strength'.

    Inscription: 17 DVW Ydyw Ein Cadernid 24

    Manufactured: in 1724 in England.

    Current location: not known.

  9. 886

    pimlico,_gifford mead 03.jpg
    660 x 910 mm

    Description: Arched rectangular central panel with ‘nutshell’ edging on a broad fillet; head-dressed figure, holding a sceptre in her right hand, sitting in a chariot drawn to the left by two armadillos; the whole upon a two-arched bridge with masonry, decorated keystones and spandrels, and waves beneath; above, swagged drapery with two tassels hanging from the centre; arched rectangular shaped border with fillet edging, with a symmetrical scrolled wire design; the monogram, SHR, bottom centre; above is a symmetrical design of scrolled floral tendrils.

    Notes: The design is derived from a personification of America, one of a set of playing cards entitled 'Jeu de la Géographie', designed by Stefano della Bella (1677).

    Copies of this fireback are known.

    Inscription: SHR

    Manufactured: in the late 17th to early 18th century in England.

    Current location: not known.

  10. 891

    pimlico,_gifford mead 04a.jpg
    470 x >430 mm

    Description: Quasi-arched rectangular shaped; unique, cavetto-moulded edging, which loops upon itself three times. A mythical salamander shown in the flames which legend states it is able to resist; behind is what appears to be a palm tree.

    Notes: Other known variants are dated; this variant confirms that the dates were added to subsequent castings. Corrosion to the bottom right corner may have obliterated a letter 'M' seen on another casting; presumably part of 'IM'.

    Manufactured: in the mid 17th century possibly at Brede Furnace in the Weald area of England.

    Current location:, not known.

    Citation: Schubert, H. R., 1957, 'A Forgery in Iron', Journal of the Iron & Steel Institute, 165, p. 125.