Firebacks

Manufactured in Belgium

  1. 1137

    leuven_museum 480x565.jpg
    480 x 565 mm

    Description: Arched shape with ovolo-moulded edging; central shield with the English royal Tudor arms and escutcheon of a lion rampant, surrounded by a Garter with an incorrect inscription, the shield surmounted by a crown and supported on the dexter side by a dragon and on the sinister side by a greyhound; to the left of the crown, a crowned rose and the the right, a crowned portcullis; above the supporters the date 1614 is split by the shield; below, split by the Garter buckle, initials GB.

    Notes: The arms are of Henry VII or Henry VIII, the inescutcheon probably representing a marriage to an heiress, but are anachronistic as the date was in the reign of James I (and VI). The initials GB are believed to relate to Gilles or Georges Boniver, who worked at the foundry at Theux, near Liège, and whose initials appear on several firebacks. The fireback is thought to be a 19th-century copy.

    Copies of this fireback are known.

    Inscription: 16 14 / HONI SOIT IL QVIMAL I PANSE / G B

    Arms: English royal Tudor with an inescutcheon of a lion rampant

    Manufactured: in 1614 probably at Theux furnace in the Franchimont area of Belgium.

    Current location: M-Museum Leuven, 28-30 Leopold Vanderkelenstraat, Leuven, Brabant, Belgium.

    (part of the Leuven Museum museum group)

  2. 823

    mayfield,_yew tree farmhouse.jpg
    645 x 730 mm

    Description: Arched shape with ovolo egg-and-dart edging; crown surmounting a shield, a quartered shield with an escutcheon impaling a crowned lion rampant with an escutcheon; text along the bottom.

    Notes: The arms have not been identified; LOVEN is the town of Leuven, capital of the province of Brabant, which, in 1662, was in the Spanish Netherlands.

    Inscription: LOVEN 1662

    Manufactured: in 1662 possibly in the Lorraine area of Belgium.

    Current location: in private hands, Mayfield, East Sussex, England.

  3. 562

    petworth_044.jpg
    373 x 742 mm

    Description: Rectangular; flanged edging; main panel, pictorial scene of Adam and Eve with, between them, the Tree of Life, bearing fruit, entwined by a serpent; bottom panel indistinct.

    Notes: A much worn plate.

    Copies of this fireback are known.

    Manufactured: in the mid to late 16th century possibly in the Wallonia area of Belgium.

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

    Museum number: NT/PET/M/56 (part of the National Trust museum group)

    Citation: Driesch, K. von den , 1990, Handbuch der Ofen-, Kamin- und Takenplatten im Rheinland (Cologne, Rheinland-Verlag).

  4. 753

    va_29.jpg
    680 x 780 mm

    Description: Arched rectangular shape; parallel astragal and fillet edging; four panels divied by fillets, an orb with a cross at the intersection; top left, naked female figure holding scales in her right hand, a scroll bearing an inscription above her and to her left and right; top right, a naked female figure holding a hawk in her right hand and leading two dogs with her left hand, a scroll bearing an inscription above her and to her left and right; bottom left, a clothed female figure, at her feet a fox attacking a serpent, a scroll bearing an inscription above her and to her left and right; bottom right, a clothed female figure, at her feet hounds chasing and attacking another animal, a scroll bearing an inscription above her and to her left and right.

    Notes: The figures (clockwise from top left) probably represent Justice and Vigilance (both naked), Indifference and Perfidy (both clothed).

    Copies of this fireback are known.

    Inscription: ..T IS V EN SCHADE DAT TROV IS LICHTER DAN PLVME / ICH JAG OM DIE VINDE OFT ICH TROV KOND FINDEN / TROV IS DOET ONTROVE VERDT VERFAVLEN / ONTOVE LOEPT OVER ..AL

    Manufactured: in the late 16th century possibly in the Wallonia area of Belgium.

    Current location: Victoria & Albert Museum, Cromwell Road, Kensington & Chelsea, Greater London, England.

    Museum number: 142.1898 (part of the Victoria & Albert Museum museum group)

    Citation: Driesch, K. von den , 1990, Handbuch der Ofen-, Kamin- und Takenplatten im Rheinland (Cologne, Rheinland-Verlag).

  5. 1171

    virton_069.jpg
    ~770 x ~770 mm

    Description: Rectangular shape; fillet edging; arrangement of five shields: centre, arms of the kingdom of France surmounted by a crown and, below, the word FRANCE on a fillet edged rectangular block over a cartouche; top left, arms of the duchy of Lorraine surmounted by a bishop's mitre and crozier separating a largely illegible text; top right, arms of the kingdom of Spain surmounted by a crown with the letters SPA to the left; bottom right, arms of the duchy of Nevers surmounted by a coronet below a fillet edged rectangle with the word NEVERS; bottom left, arms of the kingdom of England surmounted by a crown below a fillet edged rectangle with the word ANGLIA; bottom centre, the date 1623.

    Notes: A taque de foyer or takenplatte; the arms in the corners are likely to be of Louis of Lorraine, Cardinal of Guise, King Philip III of Spain, Charles I, Duke of Nevers and Rethel, and Queen Elizabeth I of England. A similar fireback with the same arms, illustrated by von den Driesch (1990, p.181), has the date 1611.

    Inscription: [LORR]AI[NE] SPA / ANGLIA NEVERS / FRANCE / 16z3

    Arms: Louis of Lorraine; Kingdom of Spain; Kingdom of France; Kingdom of England; Charles Gonzaga, Duke of Nevers

    Manufactured: in 1623 possibly in the Lorraine area of Belgium.

    Current location: Musée Gaumais, 38 Rue d'Arlon, Virton, Luxembourg, Belgium.

    (part of the Musée Gaumais museum group)

    Citation: Driesch, K. von den , 1990, Handbuch der Ofen-, Kamin- und Takenplatten im Rheinland (Cologne, Rheinland-Verlag).