1. 735

    740 x 630 mm

    Description: Rectangular; three birds turned to the left, their heads facing right, and their right wing extended; vine pattern strips, one horizontal along the top, 14, of varied length, vertically across the rest of the fireback; seven ‘pineapple’ shapes with criss-cross markings, arranged in three groups — 3-1-3 — adjacent to the birds.

    Notes: The same vine strips are found on several firebacks, including some of the ‘Anne Forster’ series; the birds are also seen on a number of firebacks; the ‘pineapple’ shapes may be the same as those on the ‘Anne Forster’ graveslab in Crowhurst church, Surrey. John Starkie Gardner and later writers attributed the birds to an association with the Fowle family; this is unlikely to be correct as the Fowles came to prominence in the iron industry towards the end of the sixteenth century and had their own distinctive decorative emblems. Formerly in the collection of Lady Dorothy Nevill.

    Manufactured: in the mid to late 16th century possibly at Pounsley furnace in the Weald area of England.

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

    Museum number: M.120-1914 (part of the Victoria & Albert Museum museum group)

    Citation: Dawson, C., 1903, 'Sussex Iron Work and Pottery', Sussex Archaeological Collections, 46, pp. 1-54.

    Citation: Faraday, L., Feb 1939, 'Sussex Firebacks in the Victoria and Albert Museum', Sussex County Magazine, 13, 2, pp. 100-103.

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

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

    Citation: Straker, E., 1931, Wealden Iron (London, Bell)