Known as 'les grands faunes', the models for these iconic candelabra have been sought after and admired for more than two hundred years. Clearly originating in the Louis XVI period, they have been attributed to François Rémond and they also relate closely to a drawing in the Musée des Art Décoratifs, Paris of circa 1785 and traditionally attributed to the celebrated Parisian marchand-mercier Dominique Daguerre (illustrated here).
However, as the slightly modified pair now in the collections of the Louvre illustrate, they were just as popular during the 19th century. During the Empire period, a pair were supplied to the Empress's second salon at Fontainebleau in 1804 and another pair was supplied to the Emperor's salon and in 1852 both pairs were moved to the Tuileries where they decorated Emperor Napoleon III and Eugénie's Apollo salon (see D. Alcouffe, et. al., Gilt bronzes in the Louvre, Dijon, 2004, no. 95). An identical pair is also in the James A. de Rothschild Collection at Waddesdon Manor.
For similar models and other variations of this model which are in many important museum and palace collections, see H. Ottomeyer and P. Pröschel, Vergoldete Bronzen: Die Bronzearbeiten des Spätbarock unde Klassizismus, Munich, 1986, pp. 282-283.