A Pair of Royal Canton Enamel Wall Sconces
A Pair of Royal Canton Enamel Wall Sconces

A Pair of Royal Canton Enamel Wall Sconces

c. 1750 China

Offered by Thomas Coulborn & Sons


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The enamel plaques: CHINA, mid 18th century
The ormolu candle branches: probably DANISH, fitted on arrival

The shaped enamel plaques with famille rose decoration with birds, flowers, masks and animals, each with two candle arms, probably fitted in Denmark on arrival.

In 1738, a set of twelve Canton famille rose enamel bracket lights was imported for Sophie Magdalene of Brandenburg-Kulmbach, Queen-Consort of Denmark and Norway and wife of Christian VI, for her apartment at the royal residence of Christianborg Palace. Despite bringing the strict influence of Pietism to her court, Queen Sophie Magdalene was also interested in pomp and luxury; her extravagant taste reflected in her commissioning of a new crown and establishing the collection of crown jewels. The sumptuous, exotic, delicate and colourful beauty of the wall sconces reflected her enthusiasm for acquiring items commensurate with her status.

Of the original set of twelve, eight were reputedly destroyed in a fire at Christianborg Palace in 1794, leaving only this pair and the pair now in the Collection of the Danish National Museum in Copenhagen.

We are grateful to Baron Henrik Wedell-Wedellsborg, Chairman of The Count Dannemand Foundation (Det grevelige Dannemandske Stift), and owner of Aastrup Kloster where the pair of Royal Canton Enamel Wall Sconces was hanging until they were sold in 1889, for his assistance with the cataloguing.
With some restoration to the enamel, conservation report available.
Imported for Sophie Magdalene of Brandenburg-Kulmbach, the Queen-Consort of Denmark and Norway in 1738.
King Frederik VI gifted to his official mistress, Bente Frederikke Rafsted (1790-1862).
Inherited by their eldest son Count Frederik Wilhelm Dannemand (born 1813, died 1888) the then owner of Aastrup Kloster
On whose death, sold at an auction at Aastrup in 1889.
Acquired in the 1950s by Arne Schlesch, New York.
Tove Clemmesen & Mogens B. Mackeprang, Kina og Danmark 1600-1950, Nationalmuseet 1980.
Height 23.00 inch (58.42 cm)
Width 12.50 inch (31.75 cm)
Stock Code
Thomas Coulborn & Sons

Thomas Coulborn & Sons
Vesey Manor
64 Birmingham Road
Sutton Coldfield
West Midlands
B72 1QP

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