A superb George III Neoclassical fireplace of the Roman Doric order, in white statuary and Spanish Brocatelle marbles. The design attributed to Sir William Chambers (1723–1796), architect to the King. Circa 1765–1770.
The tiered shelf with egg and dart moulding (symbolic of good and evil), above the frieze, which is centred with a rectangular tablet, superbly sculpted with a bucranium mask of an ox skull. This has horns and a jewelled decoration adorns the skull above the eyes, the horns are draped with bunched, knotted ribbons, which hold swags of tied bell flowers, the other end of which are secured and fall from circular, flower decorated paterae. This is flanked by Brocatelle panels and recessed, statuary end blockings. The jambs with pilaster Brocatelle uprights, flanked by statuary out grounds with scrolling volutes decorated with sprigs of foliage. The opening with moulded edge, the whole raised on foot blocks.
Height 42 3/4 in (108.6cm) width 56 7/8 in (144.5cm)
Internal height 36 1/4 in (92.1cm) width 35 7/8 in (90.9cm)
Footblock to footblock 52 3/4 in (134cm)
Shelf depth 10 1/4 in (26cm)