Cast in Eastern France, circa 1785, this large and thick fireback features military and musical motifs flanking an oval coat of arms medallion. The overall shape of the fireback is rectangular, with an arched top that is filled by the open crown that tops the heraldic display.
The coat of arms consists of banded husked wreath surrounding two interlaced and scrolled X’s that are pierced by an arrow. There is a crinkled ribbon at the bottom that folds over the wreath and trails down below. On the right side of the medallion is a five-string lyre in front of laurel and acanthus leaves. To the left of the coat of arms is a crested helmet over a sword sheath, once again fronting two distinct foliate branches. The entire grouping is surrounded by two borders that follow the overall shape of the iron: spiral fluting inside a series of repeating roundels.
Firebacks have been used for centuries to not only protect the walls of fireplaces, but to redirect heat back into the house. Our large 18th century fireback can still be used in that capacity. It can also be inserted into a wall, making for a unique piece of decorative art. Another potential use is to mount the fireback in the kitchen as a stove backsplash.
*Please make note of fireback size and exceptional thickness (very heavy)
CONDITION: Good antique condition, with light buildup and oxidation. Fleabites and some lightly faded elements, particularly near the bottom, commensurate with age and use. Heavy item.