Gilt And Painted Mirror

In the possession of Messrs. (;ill and Reigate. 10 it. I in. high x 3 ft. 2J ins. wide. Date about 1775-80.

CARVED AND GILT MIRROR. (One of a pair.)

S ft. I in. high x 2 ft. Si ins. wide. Date about 1775.

CARVED AND GILT MIRROR. (One of a pair.)

S ft. I in. high x 2 ft. Si ins. wide. Date about 1775.

fr^i or the glass, was too great to permit of their removal without extraordinary precautions. The size of the sheets of glass used in these frames is in itself an indication that they could only have been made for the very wealth}-, that, for example, in Fig. 62 measuring 6 feet 2 inches in width by 3 feet 7 inches to the transom—which would have to be in the one piece—representing, at this date, an outlay of nearly £600 of our present-day money, according to the prices of glass during the latter half of the eighteenth century. Chippendale, who appears to have first introduced the method of fixing to a backboard previously described, was also careful to design his mirrors so that the field of the glass could be broken up into several pieces with the decoration concealing the joints.

That these high prices were demanded and paid for silvered glass at this period is demonstrated by the evidence of the original invoices still preserved at Nostell Priory and Harewood House, where Chippendale worked under the superintendence of Robert Adam. Thus in the account for 1773-5 of " Edwin Lascelles, Esq., to Chippendale, Haig, and Co., Dr.," " A very large pier Glass" is invoiced at £290—equivalent to about £770 of our currency in its present purchasing value—and the frame is charged separately •at £70 as "A superb Frame to do., with very large Antique ornament exceeding richly Carved and highly finished in burnished Gold." This refers more probably to an Adam design rather than to one of Chippendale's own, hence the reference to " Antique ornaments."

Another looking-glass, 91 inches by 51J inches, is charged in the same account at £160, and the frame is separately referred to as "A vety large Elegant Frame to do. with Antique Ornaments exceeding richly Carved

" Design of a GinmkPfor Sir Laivrence Dundas." 1765.

" Design of a GinmkPfor Sir Laivrence Dundas." 1765.

and highly finished in burnished Silver with a large Headplate and broad Looking Glass borders with 2 paintings of do. ¿tc. Compleat. £75."

This description would fit many of the examples previously illustrated—Fig. 68, for example. Possibly the actual sketch is still in the Soane Museum, but it is difficult to determine. The reference, however, is obviously to an Adam design.

Fig. 63 is a chimney-piece and glass frame designed for the drawing-room at Northumberland House in 1773. After 1770 the collaboration of James Adam is implied by the signature " Adelphi" (brothers) on these sketches. He was, no doubt, exceedingly useful to his brother, whose Parliamentary duties after his election as member for Kinross in 176S must have interfered to some extent with his practice. There are evidences of more than the one hand in these sketches, not so much in the drawing or detailing—as the "Adam style" was very much stereotyped after 1770—as in the practical application of the design itself. Thus, a comparison of this Northumberland House pier frame with that of the Stanley example previously illustrated, is instructive. The latter is quite possible with the aid of wired composition, but the ornament of the former demands fixing to the wall. It is almost impossible to trace where the

GILT MIRROR.

In the possession of Messrs. Colling and Young. 3 ft. SV ins. total height. I ft. 5 ins. wide outside frame, n-.ite thi.iii 1750.

GILT MIRROR.

In the possession of Messrs. Colling and Young. 3 ft. SV ins. total height. I ft. 5 ins. wide outside frame, n-.ite thi.iii 1750.

4 ft. io ins. total height. 2 ft. 4 ins. extieme width. Date about 1775.

Fig. 79. GILT MIRROR. 2 ft. toj ins. total height. I ft. S ins. extreme width. Tliite nhnnt 1770

4 ft. io ins. total height. 2 ft. 4 ins. extieme width. Date about 1775.

Fig. 79. GILT MIRROR. 2 ft. toj ins. total height. I ft. S ins. extreme width. Tliite nhnnt 1770

glass begins or ends at the top, as there is not sufficient housing for a quarter-inch plate in the utteily inadequate scrolling on either side of the central device.

As it is drawn here, this frame is barely possible in metal ; it is out of the question if wood or composition be substituted. Whether it was actually made in this or another form it is not possible to say. The drawing itself does not look like a tentative sketch, but this is not a safe criterion with the painstaking work of Adam. Northumberland House was demolished in 1S74 to make way for the thoroughfare to the Embankment, known as Northumberland Avenue. The constructional materials were sold by auction, among which were nearly all the pieces designed by Adam, with the exception of such as could be easily removed, which were distributed among the Duke's other houses—Si on, Alnwick, and Grosvenor Place. Adam was engaged in decorating the interior of Northumberland House for some years, and in the drawing-room, for which this chimney-piece and glass were designed, the decorative medallions were painted by Angelica Kauffmann.

The fashionable vogue of Adam's style caused a number of imitators to arise, many of whom, in the manner of the period, endeavoured to achieve renown by the publication of books of design. Of these, Carter, Richardson, Cipriani, and the younger Chippendale are perhaps the best known. Numbers nf the classical mirrors then in favour

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