Firebacks

Manufactured in 1652

  1. 651

    bridgewater_collection 02.jpg
    530 x 430 mm

    Description: Rectangular; cavetto edging; a left-facing cockerel grasps a snake in its beak, another snake writhes on the ground behind it; date to left of the cockerel’s tail; four vertical planklines.

    Notes: The design may have religious significance, the snake symbolising sin and the cockerel denoting St Peter’s denial of Christ. The ‘1’ of the date is hooked, suggesting a common source with firebacks designed by the pattern-maker, IM.

    Copies of this fireback are known.

    Inscription: 1652

    Manufactured: in 1652 possibly at Brede 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).

  2. 171

    hastings_058.jpg
    730 x 584 mm

    Description: Quasi-rectangular with raised symmetrical scrolls between semi-circular re-entrants on top edge; ovolo-moulded edge on bottom and sides, with fillet edging on top; grotesque face with swirled hair locks, above an inverted floral spike, between two moustachioed male figures in tunics, holding pikes, standing on a cavetto-moulded compartment, date beneath.

    Notes: Alleged to represent the 'Brede Ogre', Sir Goddard Oxenbridge (1478-1531) who, legend states, was sawn in half by local children. Stylistically similar to other firebacks with connections with Brede furnace.

    Copies of this fireback are known.

    Inscription: 16 52

    Manufactured: in 1652 probably at Brede furnace in the Weald area of England.

    Current location: Hastings Museum and Art Gallery, Hastings, East Sussex, England.

    Museum number: 924.42 (part of the Hastings Museum museum group)

    Citation: Butterfield, W. R., 10 Mar 1934, 'The Brede Ogre', Hastings and St Leonards Observer.

    Citation: Hodgkinson, J. S., 2014, 'A Seventeenth-Century Sussex Woodcarver: The Evidence of Cast Ironwork', Regional Furniture, 28, pp. 39-48

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

    Citation: Manwaring Baines, J., 1958, Wealden Firebacks (Hastings Museum)

  3. 512

    penshurst_03.jpg
    435 x 433 mm

    Description: Double arched rectangular shaped; ovolo edging; central clock dial with Roman numerals separated by stops, sunburst inside, single hand with fleur de lys pointer; teardrop weights, with finials above, suspended from each side; symmetrical tendrils above; date split below dial.

    Notes: One of the ‘hooked 1’ series of firebacks; two versions exist of this fireback, the other without finials above the suspended weights.

    Copies of this fireback are known.

    Inscription: I · II · III · IIII · V · VI · VII · VIII · IX · X · XI · XII / 16 5 [..]

    Manufactured: in 1652 possibly at Brede furnace in the Weald area of England.

    Current location: Penshurst Place, Penshurst, Kent, England.

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

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

  4. 638

    ripley_058.jpg
    650 x 595 mm

    Description: Rectangular with cavetto curves rising to corners and a ‘pediment’ top; fillet edging with low-relief, alternate regularly-spaced semi-circles and triangles inside; two-handled flower vase with gadrooned upper surface and symmetrical flower design in relief below; trailing vines and flowers issuing from top and descending through handles to base; human face at top; second half of date to right of vase base.

    Notes: Another version, probably by a different pattern-maker, is dated 1662; a recasting; an earlier casting measures 665mm x 610mm

    Copies of this fireback are known.

    Inscription: [...] 52

    Manufactured: in 1652 possibly at Brede furnace in the Weald area of England.

    Current location: Mark Ripley Forge & Fireplaces, Northbridge Street, Robertsbridge, East Sussex, England.