Firebacks

800mm wide

  1. 1004

    amerongen,_21 nederstraat 800x1140.jpg
    800 x 1140 mm

    Description: Arched rectangular shaped central panel with bead edging; arched rectangular border with bead edging; fructal and floral festoons suspended on ribbons with two putti at the top and two on each side; in the left and right bottom corners, the initials 'HH' and 'S' respectively; at the bottom, a central cartouche with date (indistinctly), between floral swags; on top, twin spirals between descending floral festoons.

    Notes: A border panel, without the central pictorial panel.

    Copies of this fireback are known.

    Inscription: HH S

    Manufactured: in 1665 in the Siegerland area of Germany.

    Current location: in private hands, Amerongen, Utrecht, Netherlands.

  2. 249

    chevening_house 02.jpg
    800 x 835 mm

    Description: Arched rectangular shape; astragal and fillet edging; shield, motto, earl’s coronet and supporters (a talbot erm. and a wolf or, ducally crowned gu.) of Stanhope impaling Pitt: quarterly (1st & 4th) erm. (2nd & 3rd) gu. (Stanhope); sa., a fess chequy az. and ar. between three bezants (Pitt); motto: A DEO ET REGE.

    Notes: James Stanhope was created 1st Earl in 1718; he had married Lucy Pitt in 1714. The Stanhope seat was Chevening, near Sevenoaks.

    Inscription: A DEO ET REGE

    Arms: Stanhope impaling Pitt; James, 1st Earl Stanhope

    Manufactured: in the early 18th century in England.

    Current location: Chevening House, Chevening, Kent, England.

  3. 85

    hadlow_down antiques 01.jpg
    800 x 510 mm

    Description: Rectangular; twisted rope edging; twisted rope arranged to form inscription across upper half of plate.

    Notes: The double 'v' may have an apotropaic significance, invoking the Virgin Mary.

    Inscription: +W+

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

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

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

  4. 88

    hampton_court 02.jpg
    800 x 675 mm

    Description: Rectangular with triangular arch; stepped fillet edging; eleven columns of fleurs de lys, maximum seven in column, but varied according to space, with fleurs alternated for spacing.

    Notes: Whole pattern with five vertical planklines; a field of small fleurs de lys, France Ancient in royal heraldry, might suggest a continental origin.

    Copies of this fireback are known.

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

    Current location: Hampton Court, Richmond, Greater London, England.

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

  5. 455

    lewes,_sussex arch soc 095a.jpg
    800 x 490 mm

    Description: Canted rectangle; twisted rope edging (top and sides); a rope saltire in each top corner.

    Notes: The edging is made from the same, short lengths of rope as the saltires.

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

    Current location: Hall Place, Bexley, Kent, England.

    Museum number: 1944.24.049 (part of the Sussex Archaeological Society museum group)

    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).

  6. 977

    unknown_100 800x590.jpg
    800 x 590 mm

    Description: Arched rectangular shape; ovolo moulded edging; Tudor royal shield, garter, crown, motto and supporters (crowned lion and dragon), temp. Elizabeth I; initials in space on either side of top of garter; the top of the lion's crown and the dragon's ear overlap the edging.

    Notes: The initials have been added to an early recasting; another version has a rose and portcullis either side of the crown, and the top of the lion's crown and the dragon's ear do not overlap the edging.

    Copies of this fireback are known.

    Inscription: I G / [Garter] HONI SOIT QVI MAL E PENSE / [motto] DIEV ET MON DROIT

    Arms: Tudor royal

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

    Current location: Hign Wycombe, Buckinghamshire, England.

  7. 720

    unknown_28 800 x 1200.jpg
    800 x 1200 mm

    Description: Arched rectangular central panel with bead-on-fillet edging, pictorial representation of a man and woman walking, behind the woman a child holds her train and a young person carries a parasol; from behind a column on the right, a horse's head is visible, a tree stands to the left, at the foot of the scene is the word 'EVROPA'; tall-arched rectangular border with fillet edging; at top of arch, a lion's head above a ring, with descending grape vines on each side; at each side, a festoon of fruit suspended on a ribbon from a lion's head; at the bottom, an oval cartouche between flowers; on top, a Holy Roman Imperial crown between two descending dolphins.

    Notes: The pictorial scene is based on an engraving c.1642 of Friedrich Wilhelm, Elector of Brandenburg, and his wife, Luise Henriette of Oranje-Nassau, by Mathias Czwiczek; one of series of firebacks depicting allegories of the four continents.

    Copies of this fireback are known.

    Inscription: EVROPA

    Manufactured: in the mid to late 17th century in the Siegerland area of Germany.

    Current location:.

  8. 763

    va_39.jpg
    800 x 710 mm

    Description: Quasi-Arched rectangular shape with cyma reversa shoulders; ovolo edging; stylised lion passant guardant; crowned rose with leaf and stem on left, crowned fleur de lys on right, thistle with leaves above centre; three right-facing scrolls at base; down-facing scroll, with staple, on right side; date split between bottom corners; initials below date, bottom right.

    Notes: Blatantly Royalist in its symbolism, a variant is dated (perhaps more convincingly) 1641. Numeral style, initials, leaf depiction and the stapled scroll are typical features of firebacks made from patterns by the same maker. A later version of the same subject, but with a different shaped plate and without the fleur-de-lys, is also known (see 'Royalist series'). M. A. Lower writes of this design of fireback being cast at Waldron Furnace in Sussex (Lower, 1849, p.219).

    Copies of this fireback are known.

    Inscription: 16 49 / IM

    Manufactured: in 1649 possibly at Brede furnace in the Weald area of England.

    Current location: Victoria & Albert Museum, Cromwell Road, Kensington & Chelsea, Greater London, England.

    Museum number: 492.1901 (part of the Victoria & Albert Museum museum group)

    Citation: Hodgkinson, J. S., 2007, 'A Godly chimney plate and other firebacks from Brede', Wealden Iron, 2nd ser., 27, pp. 18-26

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

    Citation: Lloyd, N., 1925, 'Domestic Ironwork I', Architectural Review, 58, pp. 58-67.

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

  9. 944

    westland_ltd 10512 800x860.jpg
    800 x 860 mm

    Description: Cavetto-canted arched rectangular shape; double fillet edging on top, pilasters with diagonal striping at sides; double bead and pellet moulding parallel to, and inside fillet, enclosing pictorial representation of Joshua and Caleb carrying an outsize bunch of grapes; below them, at each side, a basket of flowers and fruit, and between them a cartouche with a date; on top, two symmetrical cornucopiae spilling their contents down the canted shoulders of the plate; at bottom, a plain extension panel.

    Notes: The image is derived from a fireback of c.1700, in the series identified by the letters GK, as is the date cartouche. This is a contrived design using elements from another fireback.

    Inscription: [indecipherable poss. 1700]

    Manufactured: in the 19th century in France.

    Current location: Westland Ltd, St Leonards Church, Leonard Street, Shoreditch, London, England.

  10. 920

    wigmore,_chapel farm 01x.jpg
    800 x 820 mm

    Description: Rectangular; twisted rope edging; top centre, quartered shield between four 'imp' figures, left facing, one with right arm raised, one of each on each side; below each pair of figures, a rope cross above an inverted V in rope, with an 'imp' figure, arms lowered, below the shield; along the bottom, eight 'imp' figures, alternately arms raised and lowered.

    Notes: The 'imp' figures are common on a group of firebacks, the rope designs having a probable apotropaic significance. The arms are probably of Thomas Wriothesley, who was Henry VIII's last Lord Chancellor and created Earl of Southampton in 1547; he married c.1533 so the arms could date to before then, but the same arms are displayed on his enamelled stall plate in St George's Chapel, Windsor, of 1545, and in stained glass in a window at South Warnborough, Hampshire. The same armorial stamp is seen on at least one other fireback.

    Arms: Wriothesley (Earl of Southampton)

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

    Current location: in private hands, Wigmore, Herefordshire, England.