Firebacks

Shape: ogee-arched rectangular

  1. 1062

    bradford-on-avon,_westwood manor 02.jpg
    ?550 x ?600 mm

    Description: Rectangular with ogee arch; ovolo, egg and dart edging; shield, garter, helm, mantling, crest and motto of the English House of Stuart; date split either side of garter buckle.

    Notes: One of several firebacks, all of the same date, but varying in size, framing style and moulding; all have stylistic features in common and will have been the work of the same pattern maker, who was also responsible for carving royal coats of arms in three West Country churches.

    Copies of this fireback are known.

    Inscription: HONI SOIT QVI MAL Y PENSE / 16 18 / DIEV ET MON DROIT

    Arms: English Stuart royal (James I)

    Manufactured: in 1618 possibly in the Forest of Dean area of England.

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

    Museum number: 222503.1 (part of the National Trust museum group)

  2. 1084

    chastleton_house 02.jpg
    ? x ? mm

    Description: Ogee-arched rectangular shaped central panel with fillet edging; pictorial scene with three figures dressed in clothing of the early 17th century, with wide-brimmed hats, the central figure to the fore and wearing doublet and belt, the two others in coats; across the bottom a trpartite scroll bearing the inscription CHASTLETON on the upper part, and the date MCMXCV and C of A (Charteris of Amisfield) & [illegible] R split between the lower parts, with three tulips beneath; resting on each outer part of the scroll, a barrel with a cat; an ogee-arched rectangular border with fillet edging with floral guilloche decoration and daisy flowers at the top and in the top corners; in the bottom left corner the circular badge of the National Heritage Memorial Fund, and in the bottom right corner the circular badge of the National Trust.

    Notes: This fireback was cast for Martin, Lord Charteris of Amisfield (1913-99), Trustee of the National Heritage Memorial Fund, from a pattern he designed and made, to commemorate the 390th anniversary of the Gunpowder Plot; cast with figures associated with Robert Catesby, owner of a previous house on the site and one of the chief conspirators, and the cats belonging to the then owner, Mrs Barbara Clutton-Brock.

    Inscription: CHASTLETON / MCMXCV / C of A & [?]R

    Manufactured: in 1995 in England.

    Current location: Chastleton House, Chastleton, Oxfordshire, England.

    Museum number: 1430298 (part of the National Trust museum group)

  3. 880

    christies_19-06-12 560mm x 610mm.jpg
    560 x 610 mm

    Description: Rectangular with ogee arch; ovolo, egg and dart edging; shield, garter, helm, mantling, crest and motto of the English House of Stuart; date split either side of garter buckle.

    Notes: One of several firebacks, all of the same date, but varying in size, framing style and moulding; all have stylistic features in common and will have been the work of the same pattern maker, who was also responsible for carving royal coats of arms in three West Country churches. Christie's auction 19 Jun 2012 lot 191.

    Copies of this fireback are known.

    Inscription: HONI SOIT QVI MAL Y PENSE / 16 18 / DIEV ET MON DROIT

    Arms: English Stuart royal (James I)

    Manufactured: in 1618 possibly in the Forest of Dean area of England.

    Current location:.

    Citation: Hodgkinson, J. S., 2017, 'Church Armorials and Firebacks: Evidence of an Early 17th-Century Woodcarver', Transactions of the Bristol and Gloucestershire Archaeological Society, 135, pp. 213-223.

  4. 189

    hatfield_house 02.jpg
    965 x ?780 mm

    Description: Rectangular with an ogee arch; twisted rope edging (top and sides); line of small fleursd e lys areound the top and sides, inside the edging; Tudor rose inside each top sorner (overstamped on the left); below each rose a cross of twisted rope with fleur de lys terminals, and fleurs in each quadrant; top centre, a Tudor royal shield within an oval garter - HONE SOVT QUEY MAL Y PENSE - with greyhound and lion supporters, and crown above; cross of small fleurs inclined to each side of the crown; inverted 'Y' shape in twisted rope below each supporter, a fleur at the top end of each.

    Notes: A oft-used achievement of arms; twisted rope with fleur de lys terminals are seen on other firebacks from the same source.

    Inscription: HONE SOVT QUEY MAL Y PENSE

    Arms: Tudor royal (prob. Henry VIII)

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

    Current location: in private hands, Hatfield, Hertfordshire, England.

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