Firebacks

Edging: rope

230 results

  1. 914

    abinger,_goddards.jpg
    1180 x 780 mm

    Description: Rectangular shape; twisted rope edging (top and sides) with fillet edging at bottom; cast of a 1598 fireback within a recessed panel, the arch of the original fireback being overlaid with twisted rope and diagonal lengths of rope laid alongside. The original fireback is described as follows: Composite of three elements; central panel has a complex ‘knot’ pattern with a fillet edge; side panel, repeated on either side of the central panel, contains a vase of flowers, possibly stylised thistles, within an arched frame and fillet edge; arched panel above, also with fillet edge, contains the date and inscription; the spandrels of the side panels, and the arched top panel, contain a series of 'bullseye' motifs comprising concentric rings deepening towards the centre.

    Notes: The central fireback measures 795mm wide by 735mm high and is from a different casting to that seen at Linchmere, Sussex (no. 475).

    Inscription: 1598 / IM IB

    Manufactured: in the late 16th to early 17th century in the Weald area of England.

    Current location: Goddards, Abinger Common, Abinger, Surrey, England.

  2. 10

    alfriston_clergy house.jpg
    1280 x 540 mm

    Description: Rectangular; rope edging (top and sides); central Tudor royal shield with encircling garter (motto reversed: HONE SOVT QVEY … PEN), separate greyhound and lion supporters, separate crown; a bird, repeated in each top corner, its wings displayed and inverted and its head facing behind and to the left, standing on a scroll; a fleur de lys repeated in the bottom corners; inside the birds is a repeated stamp, half of one similar to a stamp on a fireback in Hastings Museum.

    Notes: The particular form of the Tudor arms and supporters is encountered on other firebacks, as are the distinctive style of fleurs de lys and the birds (probably swans, a Lancastrian icon). The plain scroll upon which the bird is perched suggests that there might have been a painted inscription on it originally and that the stamp had not been made specifically for the decoration of firebacks but was, perhaps, redundant from interior domestic decoration. Formerly at Framfield, East Sussex.

    Arms: Tudor royal (prob. Henry VIII)

    Manufactured: in the early to mid 16th century possibly at Pounsley Furnace, Framfield in the Weald area of England.

    Current location: The Clergy House, Alfriston, East Sussex, England.

    Museum number: 200044 (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).

  3. 1288

    arc_reclamation_1060x750.jpg
    1060 x 750 mm

    Description: Arched rectangular shape with rounded corners; ovolo within fillet moulding all round; oval Tudor royal shield with garter surrounding, topped with a royal crown; dragon and greyhound supporters; initials split by crown; inscription on a fillet between legs of supporters, behind garter finial; motto on an Ionic plinth at bottom; two rectangular side panels with twisted rope edging top and side.

    Notes: The supporters are those of Henry VII or Henry VIII, but the initials suggest the fireback dates from the reign of Edward VI (1547-53). John Harvo (d. c1565) was a gunfounder who has been identified as occupying Pounsley furnace, Framfield, Sussex, possibly from as early as 1547; the fireback may have been cast originally during the reign of Henry VIII (1509-47), with the initials added to an early casting using the original pattern. The detail on the armorial back is good, showing little wear, so the casting was probably made not long after the original armorial fireback. The rivets are modern.

    Inscription: E R / HONY SOIT QVE MAL Y PAYNCE / Made in Sussex by John Harvo / DV ET MOVN DROI

    Arms: Tudor royal - Probably Henry VIII

    Manufactured: in the mid to late 16th century in the Weald area of England.

    Current location: not known.

  4. 12

    ardingly_church.jpg
    >730 x 660 mm

    Description: Rectangular; twisted rope edging on top and sides; inscription panel with repeated trailing vine decoration from impressed wooden strips — one horizontal line at top, one vertical strip on right side (missing but probably repeated on left), at least ten short vertical strips below inscription.

    Notes: Formerly at Fulling Mill Cottages, and possibly formerly at Wakehurst Place, Ardingly; it was moved to Ardingly church sometime after 1915. The inscription panel is identical to that on the memorial plate to Anne Forster in Crowhurst church, Surrey; at least ten other firebacks are known with the same inscription panel. Edward Culpeper (1561-1630), of Wakehurst, was fourth cousin, once removed, of Anne Forster. Assuming the vine strip and rope edging on the left side were of approximately the same width as on the right the overall original width of the fireback is estimated to have been 837mm.

    Inscription: HER : LIETH : ANE : FORST/ R : DAVGHTER : AND : / HEYR : TO : THOMAS : / GAYNSFORD : ESQVIER / DECEASED : XVIII : OF: / IANVARI : 1591 : LEAVYNG / BEHIND : HER II : SONES : / AND : V : DAVGHTERS

    Manufactured: in the late 16th century possibly at Pounsley Furnace, Framfield in the Weald area of England.

    Current location: St Peter's Church, Church Lane, Ardingly, West Sussex, England.

    Citation: Hodgkinson, J. S., 2018, 'The Anne Forster Firebacks', Surrey Archaeological Collections, 101, 99-114.

    Citation: Holgate, M. S., 1918, 'The Anne Forster Grave Slab', Sussex Archaeological Collections, 59, pp. 130-1.

    Citation: Holgate, M. S., n.d., The Parish Church of St Peter, Ardingly: Historical and Architectural Notes.

  5. 200

    baynards_park 01 jpg.jpg
    ?1870 x ?1020 mm

    Description: Composite; rectangular with semi-circular arches in middle (large) and ends (small) of top edge; rope on all edges except bottom; central panel effectively comprises an arched fireback form with Tudor royal arms (temp. Elizabeth I) with date above, and, below, letters G M, made from rope with fleur de lys terminals between two coronets surmounted by lions; below this are fronds with roses. On either side of this panel are placed the Anne Forster inscription panels; above each of these is a rose and crown with lion and dragon supporters, beneath which are three fleurs de lys. Along the base of the inscription panels and the central panel are single rows of ‘grape bunch’ shapes, beneath which are repeated trailing vine decoration from impressed wooden strips across the entire width of the fireback; 35 in all.

    Notes: Formerly at Baynard's Park, Ewhurst, Surrey; GM probably refers to Sir George More, who built Baynards Park after buying the estate in 1587, and who moved to Loseley in 1604. The central coat of arms has been noted on two other firebacks, dated 1588 and 1595. The rose and crown stamps have been noted on a fireback in Haslemere Museum, and on examples illustrated by Lower (all of which bear the date 1582 and the initials IA; e.g. no. 107). The association of these stamps and the particular form of rope lettering, with the Anne Forster inscription and the ‘grape bunch’ shapes, both of which have been linked with other stamps from Pounsley furnace, suggests that they, too, were part of the stock of those works.

    Inscription: 15 93 / GM / HER : LIETH : ANE : FORST/ R : DAVGHTER : AND : / HEYR : TO : THOMAS : / GAYNSFORD : ESQVIER / DECEASED : XVIII : OF: / IANVARI : 1591 : LEAVYNG / BEHIND : HER II : SONES : / AND : V : DAVGHTERS [twice]

    Arms: Tudor royal

    Manufactured: in 1593 possibly at Pounsley Furnace, Framfield in the Weald area of England.

    Current location: not known.

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

    Citation: Hodgkinson, J. S., 2018, 'The Anne Forster Firebacks', Surrey Archaeological Collections, 101, 99-114.

    Citation: Manning, O. & Bray, W., 1809, History of Surrey Vol. II (London, John White), p. 369n.

  6. 1229

    bentley_auctioneers_cranbrook_01.jpg
    760 x 455 mm

    Description: Rectangular with canted top corners; twisted rope edging (top and sides); top centre, date formed from a single stamp, over-pressed; monogram below date.

    Notes: Dates formed from a single stamp are uncommon, this series being distinguished by this practice. Formerly at a house in Rochester. Bentley Auctioneers, Cranbrook, lot 889, 4 Jun 2022 (£130).

    Inscription: 1630 / HPE

    Manufactured: in 1630 in the Weald area of England.

    Current location: not known.

  7. 18

    billingshurst,_six bells.jpg
    850 x 590 mm

    Description: Rectangular; twisted rope edging; otherwise plain plate with inscription panel centre top.

    Notes: Inscription panel identical to that on the memorial plate to Anne Forster in Crowhurst church, Surrey. At least ten other firebacks are known with the same inscription panel.

    Inscription: HER : LIETH : ANE : FORST/ R : DAVGHTER : AND : / HEYR : TO : THOMAS : / GAYNSFORD : ESQVIER / DECEASED : XVIII : OF: / IANVARI : 1591 : LEAVYNG / BEHIND : HER II : SONES : / AND : V : DAVGHTERS

    Manufactured: in the late 16th century possibly at Pounsley Furnace, Framfield in the Weald area of England.

    Current location: The Six Bells Inn, High Street, Billingshurst, West Sussex, England.

    Citation: Hodgkinson, J. S., 2018, 'The Anne Forster Firebacks', Surrey Archaeological Collections, 101, 99-114.

  8. 1142

    binegar,_mendip auction rooms 01.jpg
    605 x 540 mm

    Description: Arched rectangular shape with quadrant extensions on top corners; twisted rope edging (top and sides); vertical rope line parallel to each side, forming two separate side panels; horizontal rope line joined to vertical lines enclosing the following: inside arch, initials IBA in triad; below initials, double fleur-de-lys stamp between split date; below horizontal line, a double fleur stamp in each top corner of central lower panel; in each side panel, a single bead above a vertical sequence of squared cross stamps repeated eight times.

    Notes: The distinctive squared cross and fleur stamps are seen on other firebacks; the initials in triad may relate to a husband and wife. A taller variant of the same fireback is at Northgate House, Warwick. Mendip Auctions, Binegar, Somerset, 7 Sep 2019, lot 374.

    Inscription: IBA [triad] / 16 93

    Manufactured: in 1693 in the Forest of Dean area of England.

    Current location: not known.

  9. 1206

    birchgrove,_bunces_02.png
    960 x 880 mm

    Description: Arched rectangular shape; twisted rope edging (top and sides); top, centred, text in five lines uppercase with the letter 'U' represented as 'V'.

    Notes: Apart from the word 'Bunces' the text is an expanded transcription of the entry in the Domesday Book for Birch Grove, south of East Grinstead. Allegedly it was the author, Rudyard Kipling, who suggested to the then owner of that property that the text be used to decorate a fireback.

    Inscription: BVNCES. / ISDEM WILLELMVS TENET / DE COMITE EXTRA RAPVM / VNAM VIRGAM IN / BONTEGRAVE

    Manufactured: in the early 20th century in England.

    Current location: in private hands, Horsted Keynes, West Sussex, England.

  10. 878

    birling,_5 birling park.jpg
    804 x 765 mm

    Description: Cavetto-canted arched rectangle; twisted rope edging, separately around rectangle and arch; initials 'R' and 'H' in upper left and right corners of rectangle; 'M' above date in arch.

    Notes: The arch does not appear to have been a separate stamp, although the rope edging gives that impression; the initials, in triad, suggest a husband and wife - R.. and H.. M..

    Inscription: M / 1654 / / R H

    Manufactured: in 1654 possibly in the Weald area of England.

    Current location: in private hands, Birling, Kent, England.

    Citation: Hodgkinson, J. S., 2012, 'Pre-Restoration Iron Firebacks', Journal of the Antique Metalware Society, 20, pp. 2-15.