Description: Canted rectangle; twisted rope edging (top and sides); repeated scroll strip stamp along each side; date, top centre, between two fleurs de lys; initial below each fleur, with a fleur below each initial.
Notes: A damaged variant, probably with six fleurs, no initials, dated 1694, is also known. Formerly at Great House, Llanllowell, Monmouthshire.
Inscription: 1692 / T B
Current location: St Fagans Castle, St Fagans, Glamorgan, Wales.
Museum number: 42.82 (part of the Welsh National History Museum museum group)
Description: Arched rectangular shape; cavetto moulding all round; spreading oak tree, with leaves and acorns, filling the whole plate; three royal crowns, one at the top of the tree, the other two symmetrically on the ends of branches towards the top corners; initials GR towards the bottom corners, the remaining inscription on a scroll across the base.
Notes: The design is derived from the celebrated occasion when Charles II evaded his pursuers by hiding in an oak tree at Boscobel House, near Wolverhampton, following the final Royalist defeat at the battle of Worcester in 1651. This popular fireback has been copied frequently, and in this recast example the inscription has been re-modelled, with the traditional CR (for Carolus Rex) replaced by GR (for Georgius Rex - George V).
Inscription: G THE ROYALL OAK R
Current location: Chequers, Ellesborough, Buckinghamshire, England.
- Attached to series:
- Commemorative firebacks
Description: Arched rectangular shape; ovolo moulded edging; central oval shield of the arms of Penkhurst with fillet edge; date arranged in four corners.
Notes: The arms of Penkhurst: Argent, a fess ermines between six mullets sable. Probably the arms of Ferdinando Penkhurst, of Buxted Park, Sussex, who died in 1708.
Arms: Penkhurst, of Mayfield
Current location: Hastings Museum and Art Gallery, Hastings, East Sussex, England.
Museum number: 952.51.46 (part of the Hastings Museum museum group)
- Attached to series:
- Personal armorial firebacks
Description: Canted rectangle; cavetto-moulded edging (top and sides); single horizontal fillet below canted corners and vertical fillet parallel to each side, dividing the fireback into two side panels, two top corner panels, top panel and main central panel; corner panels, ‘daisy’ plant stamp; top panel, date between ‘daisy’ stamps, between initials in triad at each end; side panels, swirling foliage stamp repeated each side above a fleur-de-lys; centre panel, stamp of ‘Indian’ smoking a pipe at top left, stamp of seated ‘gentleman’ smoking a pipe and holding another, at top right; below each, a lion passant stamp, facing right on the left and facing left on the right; initials IB in bottom corners of centre panel.
Notes: The 'daisy' stamp is identical to those on similar firebacks dated between 1703 and 1721, and probably indicating the same founder; the use of stamps relating to tobacco smoking may suggest an origin near Bristol, the main entry port for the tobacco trade at that time. Previously noted at Little Faringdon House, near Lechlade.
Inscription: TME [triad] 1706 TME [triad] / I B
Current location: Old Bell Antiques, High Street, Lechlade, Gloucestershire, England.
Description: Rectangular; twisted rope edging (top and sides) with fillet inside; top centre, rose-and-crown between four concentric roundels, two on each side in line, with two more below the inner ones; small fleurs-de-lys in triad below rose-and-crown; top left, initials; top right, date; small rose below date; triad of small roses to right of, and below, initials.
Notes: The style of rose and crown is similar to that used in gun founding in the Tudor period, suggesting that the furnace that was the source of this fireback may have been used for that purpose.
Inscription: RP 1692
Current location: in private hands, Wadhurst, East Sussex, England.
Description: Rectangular with curved top corners; Arched rectangular extension on top; ovolo edging; mounted figure in 17th cent. armour riding down a dragon to the left and below, sword in hand; inscription across top and either side of horseman; date below left; initials below right.
Notes: Probably a representation of St George and the Dragon, with political undertones, given the date. Cursius may be a mi-spelling of Marcus Curtius, who sacrificed himself for the good of Rome. Nil Desperandum - Despair not. Other firebacks also bear the initials, IM, which probably relate to the pattern maker, some with a similar style of lettering.
Copies of this fireback are known.
Inscription: CVRSIVS / NIL DESPERANDVM / 1650 / IM
Current location: in private hands, Rolvenden, Kent, England.