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Antique English George II Period Georgian Gold Leaf Mirror England circa 1750 (14 1/2"w x 36 1/2"h)

An antique English George II period Georgian gold leaf mirror frame enclosing the original etched mirror from England circa 1750. The superb hand carved nature of this frame that is centred on the gorgeous scallop shell at the top showcases the exceptional attention to balance and symmetry important in the furniture created during the reign of George II (1727-1760). The horizontal base supports the vertical sides that reach a shaped crown in an arched shape with a carved frame that has a deeply moulded profile around the entire expanse of the frame. The shaped profile shows the hand applied gold leaf to advantage and the areas where the gold has rubbed off reveals the undercoating the rouge surface that gives the gold leaf its warm colouration. The arched top is reminiscent of the frames seen during the reign of Queen Anne (1702-1714) with the difference that frames during her period did not feature the elaborate cresting seen on this George II example. The brilliantly carved scallop shell is flanked on both sides by a lavish display of foliate motifs that begin at the top with a tight scroll and open downwards in two discrete sections each containing an amazingly detailed surface. The lower foliate design is extended by a series of four nut husks that follow the shape of the frame and provide a visual definition to the decoration as they are fully sculptural and also adorned with the gold leaf. The frame encloses the original mirror glass that is distinctive in two ways. First, the beveled edge is a hand bevel that was achieved by a time consuming attention to the process. Please use the zoom feature on our website to see the minute differences in the width of the bevel indicative of the hand work. It was impossible to make the bevel the same width around the entire perimetre when done by hand. The invention of a machine in the nineteenth century that was able to follow a preset pattern of beveling offered a finished mirror at a lower cost and was capable of accommodating a variety of large sizes of mirror glass. This new technology changed the use of mirror glass forever and a flat edged mirror became somewhat rare as everyone desired a beveled edge. The second aspect is the hand etched starburst design seen in the mirror glass just beneath the arched top. Look closely at the oval interior surrounded by etched lines of varying lengths chosen to resemble the rays of a sun or star. The overall design is of an eight pointed star but again notice the subtle differences in the length and in the slight off centredness of the entire star. It is important to remember that the designer and artisan who created this piece was working with entirely natural light and if the sun was down had to make do with the illumination from a blazing fire or a burning candle. In the twenty-first century we have become so accustomed to the machined perfection of today's products that we rarely encounter a piece that has been entirely hand crafted with its attendant quirks. The various sparkles and speckles seen in the original mirror glass only add to its enchanting appearance in this lovely eighteenth century mirror.

# EEJ218

DIMENSIONS

14.50" w x 2.00" d x 36.50" h

36.83cm w x 5.08cm d x 92.71cm h

$3,478.00

An English George II period gold leaf frame enclosing the original etched mirror glass circa 1755. The superb hand carved nature of this frame that is centred on the gorgeous scallop shell at the top showcases the exceptional attention to balance and symmetry important in the furniture created during the reign of George II (1727-1760). The horizontal base supports the vertical sides that reach a shaped crown in an arched shape with a carved frame that has a deeply moulded profile around the entire expanse of the frame. The shaped profile shows the hand applied gold leaf to advantage and the areas where the gold has rubbed off reveals the undercoating the rouge surface that gives the gold leaf its warm colouration. The arched top is reminiscent of the frames seen during the reign of Queen Anne (1702-1714) with the difference that frames during her period did not feature the elaborate cresting seen on this George II example. The brilliantly carved scallop shell is flanked on both sides by a lavish display of foliate motifs that begin at the top with a tight scroll and open downwards in two discrete sections each containing an amazingly detailed surface. The lower foliate design is extended by a series of four nut husks that follow the shape of the frame and provide a visual definition to the decoration as they are fully sculptural and also adorned with the gold leaf. The frame encloses the original mirror glass that is distinctive in two ways. First, the beveled edge is a hand bevel that was achieved by a time consuming attention to the process. Please use the zoom feature on our website to see the minute differences in the width of the bevel indicative of the hand work. It was impossible to make the bevel the same width around the entire perimetre when done by hand. The invention of a machine in the nineteenth century that was able to follow a preset pattern of beveling offered a finished mirror at a lower cost and was capable of accommodating a variety of large sizes of mirror glass. This new technology changed the use of mirror glass forever and a flat edged mirror became somewhat rare as everyone desired a beveled edge. The second aspect is the hand etched starburst design seen in the mirror glass just beneath the arched top. Look closely at the oval interior surrounded by etched lines of varying lengths chosen to resemble the rays of a sun or star. The overall design is of an eight pointed star but again notice the subtle differences in the length and in the slight off centredness of the entire star. It is important to remember that the designer and artisan who created this piece was working with entirely natural light and if the sun was down had to make do with the illumination from a blazing fire or a burning candle. In the twenty-first century we have become so accustomed to the machined perfection of today's products that we rarely encounter a piece that has been entirely hand crafted with its attendant quirks. The various sparkles and speckles seen in the original mirror glass only add to its enchanting appearance in this lovely eighteenth century mirror.