A 19thC Italian Silver Gilt Rectangular Wall Mirror c.1870

Origin: Italian
Period: Mid 19thC
Provenance: Unknown
Date: c.1870
Height: 24.75”
Width: 16.5”
Depth: 1” (all at extremities)

The distressed but beautifully evocative nineteenth century rectangular silver gilt wall mirror, retaining the original gilded decoration, now nicely worn in many areas to the ripple moulded frame, the original mercury glass rectangular mirror plate now beautifully foxed, the whole surviving from the third quarter of nineteenth century Italy.

The mirror is in decorative and distressed condition and is attractive in its originality and the fact it has not been re-gilded or meddled with. The original thick mercury glass plate is foxed beautifully with one speck of thinned wear as per the photographs. It has been lined later to the reverse with a fleur-de-lys paper and there is a hook present for wall hanging.

The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries saw the development of decorative mirrors in Italy. The cylinder process, where cylinders of glass were blown then split open and laid flat, had some limitations meaning that only small plates could be made, so several pieces of glass would be used to create a single mirror. This is actually quite a large piece of single glass which would have been a little easier to make in the nineteenth century.

An achingly beautiful reminder of the passing of time and still a functional piece, yet drowning in the past.