This pair of brightly silvered bronze chenets are from France (circa 1900), in the style of Louis XVI, as noted by the presence of laurel leaf festoons and pots au feu finials. They were used in well-appointed homes, not only to decorate the front of the fireplace, but to prevent burning logs from rolling onto priceless rugs, should they break free of the fire. Often seen in natural wrought iron, or gilded in gold (in finer homes), it is unusual to see them in silvered bronze.
Each finial has two pots au feu of different sizes and orientation adorned with a laurel swag. The larger fire pot, which rises higher, sits on top of the shaped entablature of a fluted column hung with another foliate swag and embellished with recessed textured panels and a side floret. A sloped cavetto molding above a foliate rinceaux and four pierced Vitruvian waves joins the column to a small pedestal topped with the smaller fire pot. The pedestal has a protruding main body of a fluted panel above leaf curls and a spiral rosette.
The pair of Louis XVI style silvered bronze chenets were possibly resilvered recently, giving them a lustrous silver finish. A perfect accessory for any fireplace, the chenets could also be repurposed into a unique pair of lamps.
CONDITION: Good antique condition, with minor rubs and fleabites from the casting process. The chenets may have been resilvered recently and the work was exemplary.