Firebacks

Date & initials firebacks

161 results

  1. 1012

    east_preston, bay tree cottage (country life 1959) 762x533.jpg
    762 x 533 mm

    Description: Canted rectangle with twisted rope edging (top and sides); rope line separating rectangle from trapezoidal section, which is, in turn, separated by rope lines into a central rectangle containing a rebated lozenge stamp beneath the date (reversed), and two mirrored triangles each containing what appear to be mirrored stamps of a bird, possibly a partridge, and an initial; both the initials and the date are reversed.

    Notes: Reversal of numerals and letters is not uncommon on firebacks.

    Inscription: E [or] F 16 04 C

    Manufactured: in 1604 possibly in the Weald area of England.

    Current location: not known.

    Citation: Eschbaecher, J., 22 Jan 1959, 'Why in reverse?' [letter], Country Life, p. 153.

  2. 292

    flaxley_abbey 02.jpg
    755 x 545 mm

    Description: Rectangular; cavetto-moulded edging; top centre, date, above initials; two low-relief fleurs de lys down each side from top corners, and central fleur below and between the initials.

    Notes: The initials may relate to William Boevey who was owner of Flaxley furnace from 1683-92. Another fireback with the same date and initials, and more fleurs, is also known.

    Inscription: 1685 / W B

    Manufactured: in 1685 at Flaxley Furnace in the Forest of Dean area of England.

    Current location: Flaxley Abbey, Flaxley, Gloucestershire, England.

    Citation: Bick, D. E. [incorrectly printed as Bick, R.], Sept 1985, 'Firebacks', Period Homes, pp. 21-4.

  3. 293

    flaxley_abbey 03.jpg
    900 x 733 mm

    Description: Canted rectangle; inset twisted rope edging (top and sides); stamp formed of a statuette of an standing angel with left hand at the waist, and holding a sceptre in the right hand; date split either side of angel; initials in triad above angel; small face stamp repeated three times, one each side of angel, and one below.

    Notes: The identity of those to whom the initials refer is not known; the use of the angel statuette is a rare inclusion of a religious motif on an English fireback. A variant of this fireback is at the Lygon Arms Hotel, Broadway, Worcestershire (no. 1027).

    Inscription: IHI [triad] / 16 33

    Manufactured: in 1633 in the Forest of Dean area of England.

    Current location: Flaxley Abbey, Flaxley, Gloucestershire, England.

    Citation: Bick, D. E. [incorrectly printed as Bick, R.], Sept 1985, 'Firebacks', Period Homes, pp. 21-4.

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

  4. 67

    frant,_lightlands 01.jpg
    892 x 875 mm

    Description: Pediment and frieze resting on fluted Tuscan pilasters; plain podium base; rectangular central panel with double fillet edge divided into four with central panel containing initials; date in tympanum; narrow rectangular panels on each side from base to cornice.

    Notes: An early example of the use of classical architectural elements in an English fireback.

    Inscription: 1568 ER

    Manufactured: in 1568 in the Weald area of England.

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

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

  5. 949

    gardner,_beecroft gallery 01.jpg
    ~900 x ~450 mm

    Description: Rectangular; low-relief moulded edging along top, then down sides; double-looped 'lens' pattern stamp repeated six times across the top, inside the edging and, rotated, three times down each side; becapped human figure stamp, with his left arm raised to his head and his right arm akimbo, repeated in each top corner; between these, 'IE' monogram with continuous loop between the letters repeated five times, two in line above and three below, the centre one slightly raised; the date between the top two; a lifting handle on each side.

    Notes: Said to have been at Horsham, Sussex; on another fireback, at the Old Manor, Upper Beeding in Sussex, cast with the same stamps, and also dated 1617, the monogram stamp is clearly carved on a 'renaissance' shield, indicating that in this instance the stamps were not impressed as deeply. Drawing by J. Lewis André in the J. Starkie Gardner Collection, Victoria & Albert Museum, Archive of Art and Design (AAD/2014/8). Possibly the fireback referred to by Lewis André in 1882 as belonging to a Miss Alman, of East Street, Horsham (Sussex Archaeological Collections XXXII, p.76).

    Inscription: IE 1617 IE / IE IE IE

    Manufactured: in 1617 in the Weald area of England.

    Current location: not known.

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

    Citation: Gardner, J. S., 30 Apr 1904, 'An old fire-back' (letter), Country Life, p. 647.

  6. 1284

    gardner_03.jpg
    ~760 x ~650 mm

    Description: Arched rectangular shape; gadrooned edging (top and sides); initials, in separate stamps, at top of arch; date probably in separate stamps, below; spindle used as a stamp repeated three times, one between date and initial stamps, the other two below to left and right.

    Notes: The same base board and spindle have been used for other firebacks of the same period. A similar casting (no. 299) has the 'W' in a slightly different position. Formerly at Warnham Court, Sussex.

    Inscription: I W / 16 22

    Manufactured: in 1622 possibly at Cuckfield Furnace in the Weald area of England.

    Current location: not known.

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

  7. 302

    gillingham_museum.jpg
    840 x 580 mm

    Description: Rectangular; cyma reversa moulded edging (top and sides); top centre, date with central space; top corners, ‘A’ above ‘TA’, in all cases the ‘A’ is inverted.

    Notes: The significance of the inverted ‘A’ is not known; possibly an example from a late 17th-century series which often includes a rose and crown stamp.

    Inscription: A 16 92 A / TA TA

    Manufactured: in 1692 in England.

    Current location: Gillingham Museum, Gillingham, Dorset, England.

  8. 306

    groombridge_place_05.jpg
    610 x 455 mm

    Description: Rectangular; twisted rope edging (top and sides) with a fillet inside; top centre, concentric roundel with rose-and-crown below; top left, initials in triad with small rose below 'W' and small fleur-de-lys below 'M'; upper right, date with small fleur below '6' and small rose lower, below second '7'.

    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: WLM [triad] 1677

    Manufactured: in 1677 in the Weald area of England.

    Current location: in private hands, Speldhurst, Kent, England.

  9. 91

    hadlow_down, tulleys.jpg
    1247 x 770 mm

    Description: Rectangular; twisted rope edging (top and sides); narrow top panel and two narrow side panels, each separated by twisted rope; top panel with symmetrical inscription line begun and ended with a stamp formed of four spots in square, the same stamps separating the date, each of the initials and a central rose stamp, the date being repeated at each end; plain side panels; central panel comprising three shields bearing a rose and crown, one on the top line between two rectangles, each bearing a griffin passant, and two shields on the ends of the lower line with two rectangles with griffins between, the bottom half of the plate is plain.

    Notes: The shield and griffin stamps appear on two firebacks at Hastings Museum, in each of which the shields are inverted.

    Inscription: 1569 HB AB 1569

    Manufactured: in 1569 in the Weald area of England.

    Current location: in private hands, Hadlow Down, East Sussex, England.

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

  10. 101

    hartfield,_anchor inn.jpg
    610 x 595 mm

    Description: Rectangular; cavetto moulded edging; date aplit by intitials placed centrally at top.

    Inscription: 17 TM 70

    Manufactured: in 1770 possibly in the Weald area of England.

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