Firebacks

695mm wide

  1. 206

    bramber,_st marys 01a.jpg
    695 x 600 mm

    Description: Rectangular with two-stepped top; double astragal edging on sides; top centre, stamp formed of a talbot statant guardant upon a wreath; date split either side of crest; initials below date, ‘+’ below letters.

    Notes: The talbot crest is seen on other firebacks indicating a common source.

    Copies of this fireback are known.

    Inscription: 16 22 / I + H

    Manufactured: in 1622 in the Weald area of England.

    Current location: St Mary's House, Bramber, West Sussex, England.

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

  2. 21

    burwash,_batemans 01.jpg
    695 x ?975 mm

    Description: Rectangular central panel with bead edging all round, pictorial representation of the Annunciation by the Angel Gabriel to the Virgin Mary, the angel carries a lily, Mary kneels at a desk, between them is a basket, above them a dove descends from clouds amid sunbeams, to the left is an arch, in the centre a bed, and to the right a window and a canopy; above the panel is a bead-edged arch with a central scallop shell and a floral swag suspended from scrolls; arched rectangular shaped border with fillet edging, a cascade of leaves and fruit (inc. apples, grapes, pears and pomegranates) descending from a wreath, at the base two cartouches conjoined by a scallop shell and containing the inscription; on top a scallop shell between two dolphins.

    Notes: Whole pattern. A common fireback design originating in the Siegerland of north Germany and made for the Dutch market. A good clear casting. The illustration is probably drawn from V. Solis, 'Biblische Figuren'.

    Copies of this fireback are known.

    Inscription: ANNO 1667

    Manufactured: in 1667 in the Siegerland area of Germany.

    Current location: Bateman's, Burwash, East Sussex, England.

    Museum number: NT/BAT/M/8 (part of the National Trust museum group)

    Citation: Herskamp, W, 2007, Die Eiserne Bibel (Helios, Aachen)

  3. 441

    lewes,_sussex arch soc 081.jpg
    695 x 780 mm

    Description: Sub-rectangular; edged with a repeated length of helically-turned dowel (top and sides); apparently random arrangement of same piece of dowel repeated ten times, including a saltire and cross.

    Notes: Apart from the Christian significance of the cross, the other arrangements of rope lengths may be apotropaic in their purpose, the double V being a possible invocation of the Virgin. The blemishes at the base are caused by the casting sand being disturbed by the pouring of the metal.

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

    Current location: Anne of Cleves House, Southover High Street, Lewes, East Sussex, England.

    Museum number: LH000.799 (part of the Sussex Archaeological Society museum group)

    Citation: Dawson, C., 1903, 'Sussex Iron Work and Pottery', Sussex Archaeological Collections, 46, pp. 1-54.

    Citation: Easton, T. & Hodgkinson, J. S., 2013, 'Apotropaic Symbols on Cast-Iron Firebacks', Jnl. of the Antique Metalware Soc., 21, pp. 14-33.

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

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

  4. 452

    lewes,_sussex arch soc 092.jpg
    695 x 805 mm

    Description: Circular wreathed medallion, bearing the right-facing head of a man in classical dress, carried by two naked, kneeling male figures, between them a scallop shell; above the medallion a lion’s face surmounted by a flame; the medallion is surrounded by floral scrolls.

    Notes: The wooden pattern would have had a circular aperture (the frame of which is just discernible) for the reception of the medallion; the same pattern was used to cast a fireback bearing the arms of George Worge, and the stamp of the profile was used on an accompanying fireplace side plate.

    Manufactured: in the early to mid 18th century possibly at Robertsbridge furnace in the Weald area of England.

    Current location: Anne of Cleves House, Southover High Street, Lewes, East Sussex, England.

    Museum number: LH000.998 (part of the Sussex Archaeological Society museum group)

    Citation: Dawson, C., 1903, 'Sussex Iron Work and Pottery', Sussex Archaeological Collections, 46, pp. 1-54.

  5. 860

    terry_sparks 02a.jpg
    695 x 490 mm

    Description: Canted rectangle; fillet edging (top and sides); top centre, initials, above date, between repeated fleur-de-lys stamp; from top corners to bottom corners, repeated V-shape pattern formed of stamped short fillets, with an L-shape inserted between the top two Vs on each side.

    Notes: The fleurs de lys are of a distinctive style seen on a small group of firebacks.

    Inscription: RH / 1662

    Manufactured: in 1662 in the Forest of Dean area of England.

    Current location: in private hands, Checkendon, Oxfordshire, England.