Firebacks

Manufactured in the late 17th century

78 results

  1. 897

    arigna.jpg
    737 x 559 mm

    Description: Steeply canted rectangle; no edging; upper centre, square formed of twisted rope lengths inside which are what appear to be two lions passant in pale with a circle and two short sloping lines in inverted V form above; on either side of the square is an O and an R; below the square three lengths of twisted rope extend to the bottom edge, the central one vertically and the the outer two sloping away from the centre; along the bottom is the date, each numeral separated by one of the rope lengths.

    Notes: Alleged to be a representation of the arms of the O'Rourke family, who held sway in Cavan and Leitrim, the initials said to be of Owen O'Rourke. Noted in a cottage at Arigna, County Roscommon.

    Inscription: O O R / 1 6 8 8

    Arms: O'Rourke

    Manufactured: in 1688 possibly at Drumshanbo furnace in the Leitrim area of Ireland.

    Current location:.

    Citation: Lindsay, J. S., 1927, Iron & Brass Implements of the English House (London, The Medici Society).

    Citation: Meehan, J., 1906, 'The Arms of the O'Rourkes: a metal casting from County Leitrim seventeenth-century foundries', Journal of the Royal Society of Antiquaries of Ireland, 36, 2, pp. 123-142.

  2. 844

    atcham_02.jpg
    395 x 575 mm

    Description: Arched rectangular central panel; fillet edging; pictorial scene of a cloaked figure, to the right, tempting a dog, to the left, with a tasty morsel; behind are the outlines of a door and window; arched rectangular border with fillet edging, the date along the bottom; down each side, a floral festoon; over the arch, the inscription, the initials split between each side of the main inscription; on top, floral scrolls.

    Notes: The inscription translates as 'loyalty above gifts'; some castings omit the initials, NL, indicating that they were a subsequent addition.

    Copies of this fireback are known.

    Inscription: N / FIDES DONA SUPERAT / L // 1696

    Manufactured: in 1696 possibly in the Siegerland area of Germany.

    Current location: English Heritage Store, Atcham Business Park, Atcham, Shropshire, England.

    Museum number: EH ASC 4491 (part of the English Heritage museum group)

  3. 1058

    beaulieu,palace_house 03.jpg
    645 x 755 mm

    Description: Rectangular; cavetto-moulded edging with an astragal inside; baroque-style shield of Montagu impaling Wriothesley.

    Notes: Ralph Montagu (1638-1709), afterwards Earl of Montagu and later Duke, married Elizabeth Percy, née Wriothesley, daughter of the 4th Earl of Southampton, in 1673. She died in 1690; thus the fireback dates to between 1673 and 1690; Blazon: (Montagu) Argent, three lozenges conjoined in fess gules, a border sable; (Wriothesley) Azure, a cross or between four falcons close argent.

    Arms: Montagu impaling Wriothesley

    Manufactured: in the late 17th century probably at Sowley furnace in England.

    Current location: Palace House, Beaulieu, Hampshire, England.

  4. 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:, England.

  5. 875

    bradford-on-avon,_westwood manor 04a.jpg
    1300 x 760 mm

    Description: Canted rectangle; double fillet edging (top and sides); repeated 'X' stamp parallel to edging, horizontally across centre, and in two parallel lines from top to centre, dividing top half of plate into three sections; 'daisy' stamp approximately in middle of top left and right sections, repeated four times in triad in top middle section, and thrice along top of bottom section; small roundel stamp repeated 3-3-1 in top left section, and 3-1-3-1 in top right section; date split between top left and right sections; initials split in top centre section.

    Notes: An arrangement with several elements likely to have been repeated on other firebacks.

    Inscription: 16 D[reversed] B 81

    Manufactured: in 1681 in the Forest of Dean area of England.

    Current location: Westwood Manor, Bradford-on-Avon, Wiltshire, England.

    Museum number: 222490 (part of the National Trust museum group)

  6. 210

    brighton_museum 02.jpg
    405 x 534 mm

    Description: Quasi-arched rectangular shape; ovolo-moulded edging; fluid curving, double ovolo arch with a pair of putti holding looped ribbons; a lion rampant holding a cartouche, between two pilasters, each surmounted by a dragon’s head.

    Notes: A simple decorative device has replaced the customary allegorical or classical scene.

    Copies of this fireback are known.

    Manufactured: in the late 17th century in England.

    Current location: Brighton Museum and Art Gallery, Brighton, East Sussex, England.

    Museum number: HA105020 (part of the Brighton Museum museum group)

  7. 212

    brighton_museum 04.jpg
    359 x 597 mm

    Description: Arched rectangular central panel, bead edging, female figure, her right arm raised, sitting on a bull; arched rectangular border, fillet edging, swags of fruit bunches suspended from ribbon, inscription below central panel; on top, symmetrical floral swirls and flowers; plain panel at bottom.

    Notes: The image is of Europa being carried away to Crete by Zeus disguised as a bull.

    Copies of this fireback are known.

    Inscription: 16 NDW 97

    Manufactured: in 1697 in the Siegerland area of Germany.

    Current location: Brighton Museum and Art Gallery, Brighton, East Sussex, England.

    Museum number: HA105015 (part of the Brighton Museum museum group)

  8. 218

    brighton_museum 10.jpg
    910 x 350 mm

    Description: Rectangular; cyma recta moulded edging formed of short lengths probably derived from furniture; top left, initials arranged in triad; top right, date; top centre, rose-and-crown between two small fleurs de lys, with two concentric rope-patterned roundels outside, above two small roses; four roses evenly spaced across lower middle, with a fleur between each outer pair, and another rose below the date.

    Notes: One of a series of firebacks cast between the 1670s and 1690s bearing small, simple stamps, initials and dates; 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: HEM [triad] 1685

    Manufactured: in 1685 in the Weald area of England.

    Current location: Brighton Museum and Art Gallery, Brighton, East Sussex, England.

    Museum number: R3341/2 (part of the Brighton Museum museum group)

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

    Citation: Lindsay, J. S., 1927, Iron & Brass Implements of the English House (London, The Medici Society).

  9. 973

    bristol,_red lodge museum 03.jpg
    485 x 405 mm

    Description: Canted rectangle; fillet edging (top and sides); date to full width across centre of plate.

    Notes: Bold, evenly-spaced numerals.

    Inscription: 1688

    Manufactured: in 1688 in England.

    Current location: Red Lodge, Park Row, Bristol, England.

    Museum number: NX1064 (part of the Bristol Museums, Galleries and Archives museum group)

  10. 999

    broadway,_ashmolean museum 01.jpg
    555 x 853 mm

    Description: Arched rectangular shape with cyma recta shoulders; astragal edging (top and sides); top centred, date split by a mirrored 'TC' monogram.

    Notes: A bold, simple design, its dimensions reflecting the reduced size of fireplaces in the period.

    Inscription: 16 TCTC 93

    Manufactured: in 1693 in England.

    Current location: Ashmolean Museum Broadway, 65 High Street , Broadway, Worcestershire, England.

    (part of the Ashmolean Museum museum group)