The Property of
A PAIR OF GEORGE III WHITE-PAINTED AND PARCEL-GILT TORCHERES attributed to John Linnell, each with circular dished, galleried top and foliate frieze upon a waisted stiff-leaf carved urn-shaped stem with egg-and-dart cornice, the fluted collar with triple ram's head masks suspending husk garlands, on a turned shaft with gadrooned foliate corona and fluted tapering stem with stiff-leaf carved domed spreading socle, on a concave-fronted triangular platform with laurel-leaf panels and foliate-carved channelled, scrolled feet, with oval floral patera, re-decorated and with original gilding visible underneath, the tops drilled for candelabra, one with a section of a foot lacking

Details
A PAIR OF GEORGE III WHITE-PAINTED AND PARCEL-GILT TORCHERES attributed to John Linnell, each with circular dished, galleried top and foliate frieze upon a waisted stiff-leaf carved urn-shaped stem with egg-and-dart cornice, the fluted collar with triple ram's head masks suspending husk garlands, on a turned shaft with gadrooned foliate corona and fluted tapering stem with stiff-leaf carved domed spreading socle, on a concave-fronted triangular platform with laurel-leaf panels and foliate-carved channelled, scrolled feet, with oval floral patera, re-decorated and with original gilding visible underneath, the tops drilled for candelabra, one with a section of a foot lacking
14in. (35.5cm.) diameter; 61¾in. (157cm.) high
Provenance
Almost certainly supplied to Jeffery, 1st Lord Amherst (d.1797)
Thence by descent

Lot Essay

These richly-carved gueridon stands for candelabra or vases are designed in the George III 'antique' style of the 1770s and can be attributed to John Linnell (d.1796), cabinet-maker and upholsterer of Berkeley Square. With their tripod-altar plinths, vase-capped pedestal form and festive husk-festooned ram-masks, they relate to the popular athenienne stands of the period. The design, incorporating additional ram-masks above the anathus-scrolled feet, appears in John Linnell's design, no.554, executed for a Mr. Harries in 1776 (see: H.Hayward, 'The Drawings of John Linnell', Furniture History, 1969, fig.70). The stands appear to been commissioned from Linnell by Jeffery, Lord Amherst (d.1797) about the time of his elevation as Baron Amherst of Holmesdale in 1776, in recognition of his military successes in Canada, where he had been Commander-in-Chief of British forces. He renamed his family estate at Riverhead, Kent, as 'Montreal' and in the same year he ordered wall-lights from Linnell whose design survives in the Linnell archives at the Victoria and Albert Museum (no.E.3586-1911).

This mirror-bordered pier-glass with gadrooned inner border framed by flower-festooned acanthus-scrolls derives from 'Glass Frame' patterns in the French 'picturesque' style, such as Thomas Chippendale illustrated in his Gentleman and Cabinet-Maker's Director, 1763, pl. CLXXXVIIa. However, its sacred-urn finial above a sunflower medallion relates more closely to the type of frames designed by John Linnell (d. 1796), cabinet-maker and upholsterer of Berkeley Square, in the mid-1770s (see: H. Hayward, 'The Drawings of John Linnell in the Victoria & Albert Museum', Furniture History Journal, Leeds, 1969, fig. 105
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