This pair of ornate neoclassically styled mirrors relate closely to the dated designs of John Linnell (1773) and Gillow (1788), both reproduced here. The close similarity of these designs fifteen years apart demonstrates the longevity for neoclassic ornament in late eighteenth century England.
The design for a mirror frame by John Linnell, currently housed in the Victoria and Albert Museum, London, and illustrated in H. Haayward's 'The Drawings of John Linnell', Furniture History, vol. V, 1969, displays many of the same design motifs, including the husk swags and scrolled acanthus found on the offered pair. Also worthy of note is the divided plate which, although more foliate in its design is also found on this pair but lacking in the Gillow illustration. Interestingly, due to the prohibitively expensive mirror glass, the pair of mirrors manufactured to the Linnell design were made as replacements for earlier out-dated frames and the glass cut to fit the up-dated models.
The closest similarity in the design of this pair and the Gillow pattern can be found in a comparison of the cresting - the anthemion-mounted urn, flanked by rams' masks and supporting husk swags - which are of almost identical form.
Similar mirrors are illustrated in G. Wills, English Looking-Glasses, 1670-1820, New York, 1965, p.122, plate 149 and G. Child, World Mirrors, 1650-1900, London, 1990, plate 223.