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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.
wood (plant material)
"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.
Original to Rundlet-May House (Portsmouth, N.H.),
40 x 25 1/2 (HxW) (inches)
Gift of Ralph May
Possibly City of London (London, Greater London, England, United Kingdom) [borough]