DCSIMG

Cause for celebration behind the candelabra

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editorial image

  • by Michael Dowse
 

As I have said before and due almost entirely to the breeding stock and intelligence of their grandparents, our grandchildren are the most advanced for their age in England, possibly the world.

The eldest who has yet to reach three years has already started his teenage rebellious streak. Quite remarkable. The youngest, who is yet to speak, walk or crawl is so obviously intelligent just from the way she lies in her cot.

This weekend we learn we are to be grandparents for the third time and are shown a fifteen week scan. Both my wife and myself are as one as we say we have never seen such an intelligent looking unborn child. I rest my case.

With all these highly intelligent grandchildren we need a special celebration. For this we need a candelabra.

Candelabra dating from earlier than the late 18th century are very exceptional. Candelabra follow the same forms and styles as candlesticks. Most were made in pairs and had detachable branches which fitted into the sconce at the top of the central column. Every detachable part should be marked with the silver standard and maker’s mark. Early ones had two arms, by the end of the 18th century they were more usual and during the 19th century candelabra with up to five or six arms were made. Candelabra were always several times more expensive than candlesticks and were produced in lesser quantities.

Many have not been subjected to the same wear as candlesticks and therefore they can often be found in reasonable condition.

The three branch candelabra were very common in the late 18th century. These candelabra were tall and grew in size until their peak in the Regency period. Decoration of candelabra of this period is the same as candlesticks; beaded border and fluting. It is important to ensure that the decoration on the main body matches the detachable branches. Candelabra were occasionally made with branches and centre column by different makers and this makes them less desirable.

On the very early candelabra the branches could be removed and the central stem used as a candlestick. On later ones this dual usage was impossible because the stem grew too high and the nozzle was too wide to hold a candle. This is a good way to date early candelabra which generally realise better prices. Unusual or elaborately decorated candelabra will also realise high prices.

 

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