Remarkable pair of French Empire period candlesticks with griffins

Large pair of French Empire period candlesticks with decor of griffins

This wonderful pair of large French Empire period candlesticks with a decor of griffins, presents itself in its beautiful original mercury gilding. The chiseled round base shows a rich ornamentation of griffins, framed by curved lines. They are set amidst further decorations of water leaves, stars and floral patterns.  Further, the fluted stem is carried by a vase which transitions into delicate patterns of water leaves and floral patterns. On the top, the stem is crowned by a candle holder, also decorated with floral patterns and topped by a bobeche with radial patterns.

These French Empire candlesticks have been executed in an excellent quality chiseled and gilt bronze with mat and shiny gilding. They are in an exceptional state of conservation.

France, Empire period circa 1805.


Height 30 cm, diameter of the base: 13.5 cm.
Weight: 1.7 kg (for the pair).

Mythology Of Griffins

The griffin is a beast with an eagle’s head and lion’s body. It is an imaginary mythical creature with the body, tail, and back legs of a lion. Further it had the head and wings of an eagle, and sometimes an eagle’s talons as its front feet. Because the lion was traditionally considered the king of the beasts, and the eagle the king of the birds, the griffin was thought to be an especially powerful and majestic creature. Since classical antiquity, griffins were known for guarding treasures and priceless possessions such as gold. In ancient art, the griffin symbol is often shown as the guardian of the gold. Griffins were believed to be sacred to the sun and also they were sacred to Apollo.


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