Description: Arched rectangular shape; gadrooned edging (top and sides); initials, in separate stamps, at top of arch; date probably in separate stamps, below, split by spindle; spindle used as a stamp repeated three times, one between date and initial stamps, the other two below to left and right.
Notes: Makes use of the same backing board as other firebacks in this series, and is possibly a variant of another fireback of the same date and with the same three spindles but with other initials (q.v.); it may originate in the Cuckfield area of Sussex, where most examples have been noted; illustration from book. Noted at West Riddens Farm, Ansty, near Cuckfield, Sussex, in 1906.
Inscription: S WC / 16 22
Description: Rectangular with canted top corners; twisted rope edging (top and sides); top centre, date formed from a single stamp, over-pressed; monogram below date.
Notes: Dates formed from a single stamp are uncommon, this series being distinguished by this practice. Formerly at a house in Rochester. Bentley Auctioneers, Cranbrook, lot 889, 4 Jun 2022.
Inscription: 1630 / HPE
Current location: Bentley Auctioneers, The Old Granary, Waterloo Road,, Cranbrook, Kent, England.
Description: Arched rectangular shape with ovolo-moulded edging and extensions to sides and top; central shield bearing arms with lion rampant supporters and motto scroll beneath; above, a marquesal coronet; date (over-pressed) in extension above main panel; inserted initials (slightly over-pressed) on either side of coronet.
Notes: The arms are of Henry Pierrepont, marquess of Dorchester and earl of Kingston-upon-Hull, of Thoresby Hall, Nottinghamshire (blazon: argent semi of cinquefoils gules, a lion rampant sable), with the motto: Pie Repone Te (Place yourself piously), a pun on the name, Pierrepont. Confusingly, the marquisate of Dorchester was created twice for members of the same family. In 1645 it was created for Henry Pierrepont, 2nd earl of Kingston-upon-Hull, becoming extinct on his death without surviving male issue in 1680. It was created again for Evelyn Pierrepont, the 5th earl of Kingston in 1706 who was subsequently elevated to the dukedom of Kingston in 1715. The original casting may therefore have dated to between 1645 and 1680 or between 1706 and 1715. The unidentified initials were added to a subsequent casting which, in turn, could have pre-dated the addition of the dated extensions which have obliterated 'Dutch'-style dolphins known to have surmounted the original.
Inscription: 1722 / I H / PIE REPONE TE
Arms: Pierrepont, Marquess of Dorchester
Current location: Red Lodge, Park Row, Bristol, England.
Museum number: NX420 (part of the Bristol Museums, Galleries and Archives museum group)
Description: Arched rectangular shape; gadrooned edging (top and sides); initials, in separate stamps, at top of arch; date in separate stamps, split by central spindle, below; two different spindles used as stamps, one centrally between splitting initial stamps, the other repeated twice on each side, slightly lower; above each spindle a fleur-de-lys stamp.
Notes: The same base board was been used for other firebacks dating from 1622 and 1632, and the central spindle can be be seen on another firenback of 1644. Purchased by J. H. Every at Bigges Farm, Cuckfield, Sussex, in 1918.
Inscription: W B / 16 44
Description: Rectangular; astragal with cavetto-moulded edging (top and sides); date top centre; initials evenly-spaced below date; low-relief fleur de lys stamp repeated three times down each side, and in triangular arrangement below 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 fewer fleurs, is also known. Formerly at Flaxley Abbey, Gloucestershire. Dreweatts Auctiuoneers, Newbury, 3 Oct 2022, lot 183.
Inscription: 1685 / W B
Current location:, England.
Description: Arched rectangle; bevelled edge to arch and top of shoulders; initials at centre top of arch, in triangle 'S' at top; date below initials.
Notes: Possibly the work of David Robertson (1716-93), the King's Smith, whose iron grates are commonly to be found in houses designed by the prominent Scottish architects, Robert, John and James Adam, of whom he was a kinsman; the form of the plate is typical of grate-backs Robertson made in a variety of sizes, notably at Dumfries House, Ayrshire, although the lack of evidence of fixings suggest that this may have been made to be free-standing. Until 1756/7 Robertson had his forge in a tenement in Niddery's Wynd, Edinburgh, between High Street and Cow Gate, next door to John Adam's premises, although it is not known if he had a foundry there.
Inscription: S / W A / 1745
Current location: Hill Top, Sawrey, Hawkshead, Hawkshead, Cumbria, England.
Museum number: NT/HIL.M.38 (part of the National Trust museum group)
- Attached to series:
- Date & initials firebacks
Description: Rectangular with 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.
Notes: An early example of the use of classical architectural elements in an English fireback. Formerly part of the J. H. Every collection.
Copies of this fireback are known.
Inscription: 568 / ER
Current location: Anne of Cleves House, Southover High Street, Lewes, East Sussex, England.
Museum number: 1944.24.062 (part of the Sussex Archaeological Society museum group)
Description: Arched rectangle; dentil ovolo-moulded edging; shield, supporters, coronet, helm, crest, mantling and motto of Viscount Montague; quarterly Browne, Albini, Fitzalan, Fitzalan of Clare, Warren, Maltravers, Nevill, Montagu, Monthermer, Inglethorpe, Burghe, Delapole, Bradeston, Tiptoft, Charleton and Kent (Plantagenet); supporters: two bears collared and chained; the crest: an eagle, the wings elevated and displayed.
Notes: The arms of either the 2nd (Anthony-Maria Browne, succ. 1592-1629) or 3rd viscount (Francis Browne succ. 1629-1682) - the 1st viscount was a Knight of the Garter and no garter is shown.
Copies of this fireback are known.
Inscription: VERITATE DUCE [Be led by Truth]
Arms: Viscount Montague
Current location: Cowdray House, Midhurst, West Sussex, England.
Description: Rectangular; astragal and fillet moulding on top and side edges; symmetrical layout of date and initials; date split between left and right sides, initials in middle, central letter in line with date, outer letters lower.
Notes: One of a series of backs dating to the 1730s and 40s using very similar sets of letters and numerals. K may relate to the surname, while the F and S may relate to the initials of husband and wife respectively. Sold at Christie's Masters and Maker auction, 30 November 2010, lot 521.
Inscription: 17 K 38 / F S
Current location:, England.
Description: Arched rectangular shape; cavetto moulding (top and sides); date in top corners; shield, supporters, coronet and motto of the Barony of Bergavenny.
Notes: The arms are those of William Nevill, 16th Baron Bergavenny, of Kidbrooke Park, Forest Row, Sussex; the arms have been modified by the omission of the motto below the compartment.
Inscription: 17 37
Arms: William Nevill, 16th Baron Bergavenny
Current location: in private hands, Greenham, Somerset, England.