10 May 2006
A PAIR OF EMPIRE GILT AND PATINATED-BRONZE BRULE PARFUM THREE-LIGHT CANDELABRA
CIRCA 1805, POSSIBLY BALTIC
Each with a winged figure of Nike supporting an antique oil lamp with three nozzles, above a spreading cylindrical base decorated with stylised palmettes and leaves, supported by three crouching griffins on a concave-sided triangular rouge royale base, regilt
30½ in. (77.5 cm.) high (2)
By family repute, these candelabra were intended as a gift from Napoleon to the Russian Tsar's daughter, but the ship carrying the candelabra foundered on the west coast of Jutland, after which Friedrich Heinrich Christian Johannsen acquired them at the auction of the ship's contents; and by descent
The Ditmarsk Johannsen family, Denmark.
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Friedrich Heinrich Christian Johannsen (1781-1851) was "geheimekonferensrad", the Danish king's personal advisor and executive for Southern Jutland. His grandson was the geneticist Wilhelm Johannsen, who coined the word "gene".
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