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    Sale 7561

    Simon Sainsbury The Creation of an English Arcadia

    18 June 2008, London, King Street

  • Lot 87

    A PAIR OF GEORGE III BLUE-JOHN AND ALABASTER OBELISKS

    CIRCA 1780-1800

    Price Realised  

    A PAIR OF GEORGE III BLUE-JOHN AND ALABASTER OBELISKS
    CIRCA 1780-1800
    Each with a flattened body on a rectangular slate plinth, one repaired
    Each 17¼ in. (44 cm.) high (2)


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    This mantelpiece-garniture of pedestal-supported Egyptian obelisks evoke 'Eternity'. Sir Nathaniel Curzon (d. 1804), who introduced a tablet of Blue John, known as 'Miller's Vein', in the chimneypiece frieze of his State Apartment at Kedleston, Derbyshire in 1762, also displayed two such 'pyramids' beside the 'marble vases' on the 'Corridore' chimneypiece, where they were recorded in 1804 (Kedleston Hall, Guide Book, 1977, p. 14). The industrialist Matthew Boulton bought one such obelisk in 1768, when he wrote that he had found a use for 'Blew John...which is proper for turning into vases'; and obelisk drawings also feature in his Pattern Book (N. Goodison, Ormolu: The Work of Matthew Boulton, London, 1974, pp. 30, 138 and fig. 166). Similar obelisks are displayed in the Buxton Museum and Art Gallery, Derbyshire.

    Special Notice

    No VAT will be charged on the hammer price, but VAT at 15% will be added to the buyer's premium which is invoiced on a VAT inclusive basis.


    Provenance

    Acquired from John Keil, 21 March 1990.