Firebacks

Miscellaneous stamp firebacks

33 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. 876

    bradford-on-avon,_westwood manor 03.jpg
    730 x 530 mm

    Description: Canted rectangle; complex moulded edging (top and sides); rectangular incised initial stamp repeated ten times 3-4-3.

    Notes: The use of an incised stamp is uncommon.

    Inscription: RTI [repeated 10 times]

    Manufactured: in the 17th century in England.

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

    Museum number: 222509.1 (part of the National Trust museum group)

  3. 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)

  4. 826

    burwash,_little broadhurst farm.jpg
    910 x 655 mm

    Description: Canted rectangular shape with moulded edging (top and sides) overlain by a length of twisted rope repeated six times; central vertical line formed of twisted rope, crossed with rope upper centre, with rope laid in a diamond pattern around the cross; lower centre, two irregular v-shapes formed of rope, one on each side of the vertical; shield shaped stamp with a fleur de lys repeated twice each side, upper left and right.

    Notes: The twin V arrangement may have apotropaic significance and the cross above them having a Christian symbolism; the base board appears to have had a moulded edge, with rope lengths applied over part of the moulding after the board had been pressed into the casting bed; a sketch of this fireback was made by J. Starkie Gardner c.1891 and is in his collection at the Victoria and Albert Museum, Archive of Art and Design (AAD/2014/8).

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

    Current location: in private hands, Burwash, East Sussex, England.

  5. 31

    burwash,_wealden iron crafts.jpg
    >600 x 660 mm

    Description: Fragment; rectangular plate with series of parallelogrammatic billets arranged across the top; crossed billets in corners

    Manufactured: possibly in the Weald area of England.

    Current location: in private hands Burwash, East Sussex, England.

  6. 223

    cardiff,_st fagans 01.jpg
    1155 x 912 mm

    Description: Rectangular; cavetto with double fillet edging; two side panels each separated by twisted rope, and each containing six fleurs de lys arranged vertically; top panel separated by twisted rope, containing inscription; central panel with lionís head between two fleurs de lys.

    Notes: A late example of the use of individual carved stamps; from Heol Ddu Isaf, Bargoed, acquired by the National Museum of Wales in 1922.

    Inscription: WLA 1714 WLA

    Manufactured: in 1714 possibly in the South Wales area of Wales.

    Current location: National History Museum, St Fagans, Glamorgan, Wales.

    Museum number: 21.31 (part of the Welsh National History Museum museum group)

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

  7. 896

    cloughoughter.jpg
    500 x 600 mm

    Description: Arched rectangular shape; no edging; three 'daisy' flowerheads, top centre and in each shoulder; central plume of six ostrich feathers issuing from what appears to be a wreath surmounting a tree stump.

    Notes: Excavated from the ruins of Cloughoughter Castle in County Cavan, which had been rendered uninhabitable in a siege of 1653. Until the early 16th century the castle had been in the hands of the O'Reilly family. On some versions of the O'Reilly arms the crest is shown as a plume of ostrich feathers, although this may be a misrepresentation of the usual crest of a tree with a snake entwined about it.

    Manufactured: in the early 17th century in Ireland.

    Current location: Parke's Castle, Fivemile Bourne, Co. Leitrim, Ireland.

    (part of the Heritage Ireland museum group)

  8. 47

    cuckfield,_legh manor 02.jpg
    1220 x 850 mm

    Description: Rectangular with canted top corners; ovolo-moulded edging (except base); top centre, cherub face and wings; below, date separated by initials in triad on either side of which a stag statant on a chapeau.

    Notes: The cherub is similar, but not identical to those on a fireback, of 1713, from Ashburnham, and the layout and edging are also similar.

    Inscription: 17 ICI 30

    Manufactured: in 1730 possibly at Ashburnham furnace in the Weald area of England.

    Current location: in private hands, Cuckfield, West Sussex, England.

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

  9. 1134

    dreweatts,_newbury 5 jun 2019 lot 183 530x740.jpg
    530 x 740 mm

    Description: Arched rectangular shape; astragal edging; central, vertically orientated, rectangular design comprising four circular copmpartments each containing a shield, surrounding an oval central compartment containing a castle surmounted by a crest of a hand between leafy branches all emerging from a mural crown, above is a crescent mark of cadency; the compartments are set within ears of corn with a flower head top and bottom centre.

    Notes: The central design is a cast of the pattern for two panels, one on each of the pedestals of the outward-facing main columns on the Norwich Gates at Sandringham House, Norfolk. The shields are of Norfolk towns: (top left) Norwich, (top right) Great Yarmouth, (bottom left) King's Lynn, and (bottom right) Thetford. The central arms are those used by the county of Norfolk (before its official grant of arms in 1904) with the crest of the then Sheriff, Robert John Harvey of Crown Point Norwich. The gates were designed by Thomas Jeckyll and made by Messrs Barnard, Bishop and Barnard of Norwich for the International Exhibition at South Kensington in 1862. With some modifications, including the addition of the panel on the fireback, the gates were given by the people of Norfolk to the Prince and Princess of Wales (later King Edward VII and Queen Alexandra) as a wedding gift in 1863. The design on the fireback was impressed into the mould from a panel originally used in the casting of the gates. Lot 183, Dreweatts sale, Newbury, 5 June 2019.

    Arms: City of Norwich, Borough of Great Yarmouth, Borough of King's Lynn, Borough of Thetford, County of Norfolk

    Manufactured: in the mid to late 19th century probably at Norfolk Ironworks, Norwich, furnace in the Norfolk area of England.

    Current location: Donnington Priory, Newbury, Berkshire, England.

  10. 871

    east_grinstead, gullege 02.jpg
    895 x ~590 mm

    Description: Canted rectanular shape, with stepped fillet edging (top and sides); upper centre, horizontal ?leather twist above an inverted ?leather twist 'V'; on each side, a shield-shaped stamp repeated twice, the upper one of each being angled so its side is parallel to the canted edging.

    Notes: The design on the shield is not recognisably heraldic in form, and appears to incorporate a possible pictorial element although this is not clear; the inverted 'V' shape may have apotropaic significance.

    Copies of this fireback are known.

    Manufactured: in the late 16th century in England.

    Current location: in private hands, East Grinstead, West Sussex, England.

    Citation: Lloyd, N., 1925, 'Domestic Ironwork I', Architectural Review, 58, pp. 58-67.