C1800 Impressive Candelabrum by Matthew Boulton

$3,650.00 the magnificent candelabrum.


This is an unusually large George III 5 light candelabrum: 65 cm tall and 58 cm wide. It takes 1 inch candles, as suitable to its lavish scale. It is Old Sheffield Plate, and bears the double sunburst mark of the great Matthew Boulton (1728-1809). "Old Sheffield Plate" is a process of immense technical difficulty where a sandwich of sterling silver and copper is made. This is then rolled to a thin sheet and worked into the form of the finished item. One wrong hammer strike and you have ruined the material. It is not remotely comparable to mere electroplating, where the finished base metal object receives a thin coat of 100% silver electrolytically. Old Sheffield was produced for about 100 years: from the 1740s to the 1840s.

Matthew Boulton was a principle of the Industrial Revolution, being in partnership with James Watt, and producing steam engines. He also produced luxury items such as sterling silver, Old Sheffield Plate, and gilt bronze (ormolu) items. He was a friend of Josia Wedwood.  Catherine the Great of Russia bought many of the ormolu vases and ornaments from Boulton. The NGV has some excellent Boulton ormolu in its collection.

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