A magnificent pair of Louis XV ormolu firedogs or chenets, one cast as a trophy of Turkish arms, comprising an articulated turban with foliated cresting, resting on an anchor, a naval cannon and a boar's head mask and pelt, with an entwined chimera; the other as a trophy of classical arms with articulated helmet and foliated cresting, resting on a bombard and quiver and with a ram's head, pelt and chimera, both with bearded masked men with finely chiselled flowing hair, the supports cast and chased with shells, foliage and scrolls.
These magnificent chenets symbolize warfare on land and sea, one modelled with "Turkish" arms, the other moulded in the "classical" manner. Designed to hold logs, firedogs or chenets take their name from the French word for a small dog. Pairs of firedogs were placed inside the fireplace, their gilt bronze decoration concealing wrought-iron bars that supported the burning wood.
An identical pair by this unknown maker are in The J. Paul Getty Museum, purchased at Christie's in London, 24th June 1971, lot 18. (from the collection of Anna Thomson Dodge, previously with Duveen Brothers, New York)
- Burton Fredericksen, Helen Lattimore and Gillian Wilson - The J.Paul Getty Museum, (London, 1975), p.189, illus.
- Bruno Pons et al. - L’Art Decoratif en Europe: Classique et Baroque, Alain Gruber, ed. (Paris, 1992), p. 380, illus.
- John Whitehead - The French Interior in the Eighteenth Century, (London 1982), p.150, illus.
- Charissa Bremer-David et al. - Decorative Arts: An Illustrated Summary Catalogue of the Collections of the J.Paul Getty Museum (Malibu, 1993), no 176, p. 107, illus.
- Gillian Wilson and Catherine Hess - Summary Catalogue of European Decorative Arts in the J.Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles, 2001, p. 90, cat. nr. 181, illus.
CONDITION REPORT ON REQUEST.