A Rare George III Oak Concave Wall Mirror c.1800

Origin: English
Period: George III
Provenance: Unknown
Date: c.1800
Height: 10”
Width: 8”
Depth: 1”

The scarce wall or shaving mirror, being rectangular and concave and with an oak frame, the original Georgian plate now beautifully foxed and worn with age, to the original backing board and integral hanging loop, the whole surviving from the first quarter of nineteenth century England.

The mirror is in very attractive and totally original condition. The original plate glass has lovely spotting and foxing with an area to the left flank where it worn away totally. There is small loss to the rear of the oak frame with some small fissures elsewhere.

A plus or concave mirror adds positive vergence, to aid the act of shaving for instance. By the mid eighteenth century, facial hair fell dramatically from favour as the face of the polite gentleman was increasingly clean-shaven. The arrival of the newly-invented cast steel enabled razor-makers to produce ever sharper (and indeed blemish-free) blades, rendering shaving more comfortable, and razors more durable and capable of re-sharpening. Shaving the face evinced neatness and elegance, and notionally separated the gentleman from the unkempt yokel whilst shaving the head prepared it for the wearing of a wig – an expression of gentlemanliness, masculinity and taste.

A decidedly rare and acutely original Georgian relic.