• Christies auction house James Christie logo

    Sale 1993

    Important English Furniture

    25 April 2008, New York, Rockefeller Plaza

  • Lot 80


    CIRCA 1740

    Price Realised  


    CIRCA 1740
    The rectangular plate with beveled edge within a frame with flowering and fruiting garlands to each side headed by a merman, all surmounted by a broken pediment centered by a pierced, fruit-filled basket, with a bow-tied apron, regilt
    75 in. (190 cm.) high, 47½ in. (121 cm.) wide

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    This grand mirror is a fascinating addition to Irish eighteenth-century craftsmanship. Its overall form, with a rectangular plate set into a deep frame would suggest it originally formed part of an overall decorative scheme in a room. Carvers and gilders worked on not only furniture and mirrors but on interior woodwork as well. The basket of flowers was a popular Irish motif. Swagged drapery can be seen on the apron of the frame attributed to the great Irish carver John Houghton for Francis Bindon's portrait of Bishop Boulter, 1741-2, now in the Provost's House, Trinity College, Dublin (The Knight of Glin and J. Peill, Irish Furniture, New Haven and London, 2007, p. 76, fig. 92). It also appears on a mahogany pier glass attributed to John Booker, now at Florence Court, Co. Fermanagh (ibid, p. 145, fig. 197). Similar flower festoons can be seen on a blue-painted and parcel-gilt overmantel, circa 1740, framing a portrait of Celinda Blennerhassett, now at Glin Castle, Co. Limerick (ibid., p. 260, cat. no. 219).