The candlesticks, with vase-capped, tapered and antique-fluted columns on domed plinths, reflect the George III French fashion and antique style as promoted around 1770 by the architects Sir Williams Chambers (d. 1796) and James Wyatt (d. 1813). Their style reflects a refined version of silver gout Grec candlesticks executed in 1770/1 for the Earl of Yarborough and bearing the mark of Messrs. Parker and Wakelin (C.J. Jackson, Illustrated History of Plate, 1911, vol. II, p. 872, fig. 1138.) Closely related patterns for the sticks as well as the arched branches feature in the sketch books executed by Hooker for the Soho Manufactory of Matthew Boulton and John Fothergill (d. 1790) (E. Delieb, The Great Silver Manufactory, London, 1971, p. 134). Their branch ornament of ribbon-tied acanthus and reeds was also adopted by Boulton at this period and features, for instance, on a pair of the firms silver tureens assayed in Birmingham in 1773 (N. Goodison, The Work of Matthew Boulton, London, 1974, fig. 160).
These candlesticks may very well be the ones listed in the sale 'of the superb and elegant produce of Messrs. Boulton and Fothergill's 'Or moulu Manufactory at Soho in Staffordshire' held at Christies and Ansell's Great Room on the 12th April 1771, lot 23: 'A pair of table candlesticks in or moulu' was purchased for £6.6.0. by Lady Elizabeth Melbourne, née Milbanke (d. 1818), who the previous year had married Sir Penistone Lamb, 1st Viscount Melbourne (Goodison, ibid., p. 251).