A very fine Napoleonic Prisoner of War boxwood model of the 76 gun H.M.S. Mantula
Anonymous (French, early 19th century)
This is an exceptional example of a boxwood Napoleonic POW ship model. The hull of the model is built up from wood. The bottom has been carefully covered in copper strips, and the topsides are planked in boxwood with baleen inlaid just above the waterline and between the gunports. The boxwood and baleen is held in place with brass pins. At the bow is a carved figure head of a Roman warrior, a typical motif for these models. The transom and quarter galleries are carved and pierced, and decorated with drawn ancanthus and geometeric motifs colored with polychrome. The model is fitted with a number of details that include: anchors, capstan, stove pipe, belfry with brass bell, long boat lashed amidships, water casks, pin and fife rails, deck grating, and other deatils. The model is decorated from stem to stern with very detailed and carefully drawn decoratif motifs which include floral, geometric and drapery patterns. The model is well rigged with three masts and a bowsprit, standing and running rigging, ratlines, turning blocks, bracing lines, halyards stays, cross spars, and many other details. The model is displayed on small brass rods, within a glass and mahogany case.
16 x 6¾ x 11¾ in. (40.6 x 17.1 x 29.9 cm.) cased dimensions.
Model built ca. 1800.