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Girandole

1971.507AB (RS32491)

Description

Convex mirror, circular gilt gesso frame, acanthuus foliage at base with two curving candle arms, glass bobeche with prisms, stop surmounted by a black and gilt sea horse with chains and a gilt ball festooned from his mouth, flanked by acanthus leaves and grape clusters.

Details

Label
"Cherished Possessions": This high-style mirror, typical of the opulent furnishings favored by the merchant class of Portsmouth, New Hampshire, in the years following the American Revolution, belonged to James Rundlet. Today, convex looking glasses like this are known as girandoles. Their convex glass was designed to magnify the light from candles held in the attached brackets. Ornamented with carved acanthus leaves and brass chains, this one is crowned by a hippocampus, a mythological creature that is half horse, half dolphin.
Maker
unknown
Date
1808-1815
Location of origin
London, England
Associated Building
Original to Rundlet-May House (Portsmouth, N.H.).
Material
gesso
gilding
glass (material)
wood (plant material)
Object type
Furniture; Other Furniture
Places
Possibly City of London (London, Greater London, England, United Kingdom) [borough]
Descriptive terms
gesso
gilding
girandoles (candleholders)
glass (material)
Mirror
Mirror, Girandole
Mirror, Wall
wood (plant material)
Dimensions
40 x 25 1/2 (HxW) (inches)
Accession Number
1971.507AB
Credit Line
Gift of Ralph May
GUSN
5104

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