1. 726

    660 x 990 mm

    Description: Arched rectangular central panel with bead-on-fillet edging; pictorisl scene of a central cross-shaped pillar entwined with a snake; two pavilions to the left with human figures lying before them; two standing figures to the right, one holding a staff; above, clouds with snakes descending from the sky; arched rectangular border with fillet edging; on each side, descending festoons of fruit entwined with ribbon; at the bottom, a central cartouche between palm fronds; on top, foliate swirls.

    Notes: The scene is an illustration of the plague of serpents visited upon the children of Israel by God (Numbers 21: 6).

    Copies of this fireback are known.

    Manufactured: in the mid 17th century possibly in the Siegerland area of Germany.

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

    Museum number: 291-1893 (part of the Victoria & Albert Museum museum group)

    Citation: Anon., 2 Dec 1905, 'Old Kent and Sussex Fire-backs', Country Life, pp. 767-768.