Firebacks

Shape: rectangular with triangular arch

  1. 1051

    every_catalogue 01.jpg
    ~730 x ~670 mm

    Description: Rectangular with triangular arch; ovolo-moulded edging (top and sides); small stamp of a ‘Renaissance’ shield bearing the initials IC, repeated eight times 3-2-3) in a regular arrangement.

    Notes: The initials have not been identified.

    Inscription: IC

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

    Current location:.

  2. 76

    guildford_museum 01.jpg
    655 x 445 mm

    Description: Rectangular with ‘portico’ arch; cavetto edging; two-handled vase, flower stems on each side entwined round handles; flowers emerging from top of vase; base of vase overlaps the edging.

    Notes: One of a varied group of small firebacks with bold, simple designs and cavetto edging; formerly in the possession of Gertrude Jekyll, Munstead Wood, near Godalming, Surrey.

    Manufactured: in the mid 17th century possibly in the Weald area of England.

    Current location: Guildford Museum, Guildford, Surrey, England.

    Museum number: S.7129 (part of the Guildford Museum museum group)

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

    Citation: Jekyll, G., 1903, Old West Surrey, London, Longmans.

  3. 333

    horsham_museum 11.jpg
    875 x 620 mm

    Description: Rectangular with triangular extension at middle of top edge; rope edging (top and sides); inscription in triangle - O larger than I; a pair of vertical, parallel ratchet bars (180mm long) below each top corner.

    Inscription: O I

    Manufactured: in the late 16th to early 17th century possibly in the Weald area of England.

    Current location: Horsham Museum, Causeway, Horsham, West Sussex, England.

    (part of the Horsham Museum museum group)

  4. 836

    ipswich,_christchurch mansion 07.jpg
    730 x 670 mm

    Description: Rectangular with triangular arch; ovolo-moulded edging (top and sides); small stamp of a quartered shield with helm, crest and mantling above the date '1571, initials split either side of shield, repeated six times in two lines of three, the middle stamp of each line higher than the other two.

    Notes: The arms may be of the family of Humberston quartered with another; the stamp would have been made specially for the fireback, the date and initials being carved with the arms.

    Inscription: I H / 15 71 [repeated 6 times]

    Arms: Humberston family

    Manufactured: in 1571 in the Weald area of England.

    Current location: Christchurch Mansion, Ipswich, Suffolk, England.

    (part of the Colchester & Ipswich Museums Service museum group)

    Citation: Traill, H. D. and Mann, J. S., 1902, Social England vol. III, (London, Cassell), p. 732

  5. 471

    lodsworth,_blackdown house 01.jpg
    1170 x 865 mm

    Description: Rectangular with small central triangle on top; twisted rope edging (top and sides) and across base of triangle; top centre, date, centrally positioned above the separated pairs of initials, WY; right of centre, initial X; bottom centre, a hole apparently puncturing the plate from behind.

    Notes: The initials are those of William Yalden (or Yaldwyn), an ironmaster who was active in north-west Sussex and south-west Surrey where this and other similar firebacks have been noted. The saltire is likely to have an apotropaic purpose. Although undoubtedly connected with the builder of the house wherein it rests, the fireback pre-dates the building, which was erected in 1640.

    Inscription: 1616 / WY WY / X

    Manufactured: in 1616 probably at Frith (Northchapel) furnace in the Weald area of England.

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

  6. 472

    lower_2.jpg
    ~910 x ~675 mm

    Description: Rectangular with central triangular arch; twisted rope edging (top and sides); in arch, on top, a small cross with fleur terminals, above a rose and crown with dragon and lion supporters, above two crowned shields each bearing a small fleur-de-lys; text across top half, split by the crowned shields, each word separated by two fleur terminals; across the lower part, four crowned shields each with a fleur-de-lys; fleur crosses at ends of first and third lines; bottom left, ‘I’; bottom right, ‘A’.

    Notes: No record of Thomas Unstead or his wife has been found, to date; illustrated in Lower, 1849 p. 189; formerly at Misfield [Miswell], Worth, Sussex. One of a series of distinctive firebacks cast in 1582, most with inscriptions relating to individuals.

    Inscription: THOMAS VNSTE / ADIS : FILD AND DINIS / HIS : WIF: ANO : DOMINO: / 1582 / I A

    Manufactured: in 1582 possibly at Pounsley furnace in the Weald area of England.

    Current location:.

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

    Citation: Lower, M. A., 1849, 'Iron Works of the County of Sussex', Sussex Archaeological Collections, 2, pp. 169-220 (esp. pp. 188-9).

  7. 622

    ripley_037.jpg
    1170 x 670 mm

    Description: Rectangular with pediment arch; ovolo-moulded edging; central shield, mantling and crest: per pale, on a chevron between three heads erased, as many mullets; crest: a hind’s head erased.

    Notes: No secure identification of the arms. The blazon may be: Per pale on a chevron between three ?gryphons’ heads erased, three mullets (the tinctures are not known). The crest appears to be a hind's head erased.

    Copies of this fireback are known.

    Manufactured: in the late 16th to early 17th century possibly in the Weald area of England.

    Current location:, England.

  8. 958

    sutton,_greenhill.jpg
    950 x 790 mm

    Description: Rectangle with triangular arch; twisted rope edging (top and sides); centre top, initials in triad, E above; two twisted rope crosses irregularly spaced below initials.

    Notes: The initials, probably of a husband and wife, show minimal extension in the horizontal, although the 'I' has a stud halfway; the crosses almost certainly have an apotropaic purpose; the depth of the casting varies between the top, where it is thickest, and the bottom.

    Inscription: IEL [triad]

    Manufactured: in the late 16th to early 17th century in England.

    Current location: in private hands, Sutton, Surrey, England.

  9. 715

    unknown_16 bay hall, lincs 914x610.jpg
    914 x 610 mm

    Description: Rectangular with pediment arch; wide fillet edging rebated in side edge; upper centre, initials formed of individual letters; an unidentified series of shapes in relief in the top right corner may be thumb prints.

    Notes: The edging and letter ‘W’ are very similar to those on the ‘1589’ series of firebacks and may have the same origin. Formerly at Bay Hall, Benington, Lincolnshire.

    Inscription: WE

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

    Current location: in private hands, Benington, Lincolnshire, England.