Designed to dazzle with their towering height, this pair of spectacular Russian candelabra far exceed the size of most of the French models on which they were based. Other distinctive traits are the use of eccentric decorative elements, such as the figures supporting the bobèches, as well as the general openess of the design. This is especially evident when compared to the more compact -- and stable seeming -- French prototypes.
These candelabra relate to many other Russian candelabra of the Empire period. There is a closely related pair, with identical patinated-bronze female figures supporting leaf-entwined candle arms illustrated in K. A. Solovlev, Russian Decorative Arts of the XVIII-XIX Centuries, Moscow, 1950, no. 167.
Their monumental scale and the layered design of the candle arms also relates to a pair of French Empire candelabra in the Egyptian taste sold Sotheby's, New York, 20 May 1989, lot 159 ($88,000).