This extremely important set of George II-era silver candlesticks was created by Paul de Lamerie, one of the greatest silversmiths of all time. Made for a member of the notable Duncombe family of Yorkshire, these candlesticks feature an elaborate Rococo motif that is at once uninhibited and balanced, beautifully demonstrating de Lamerie's genius for rich, organic design. It is extraordinarily rare to find a complete set of candlesticks by this important silversmith, and those exhibiting such masterful workmanship as these seldom appear for acquisition. Similar, though slightly less ornate, sets of four can be found in the collections of the Metropolitan Museum of Art (New York), and the Ashmolean Museum at the University of Oxford.
One of the leading English silversmiths of the 18th century, Paul de Lamerie was renowned for his technical proficiency and innovative designs using natural forms. Although his early works were simple, unadorned shapes, by the 1730s he was one of the first English silversmiths to adopt the ornate Rococo style. The most highly regarded silversmiths of his time, de Lamerie was patronized by the Tsarinas Anna and Catherine, Count Aleksey Bobrinsky, King John V of Portugal, Sir Robert Walpole, Viscount Tyrconnel, the Duke of Bedford, and other members of the English aristocracy. Today, de Lamerie's pieces are among the most extraordinary and recognized works of Georgian silver. Many of his pieces are prized possessions of important museum collections around the world, including the Victoria & Albert Museum (London), Royal Museum of Scotland (Edinburgh), Goldsmith's Company (London), Art Institute of Chicago and the Frick Collection (New York).
The crest is that of the important Duncombe family, possibly for Thomas Duncombe of Duncombe Park, Yorkshire
Hallmarked London, circa 1747-49
10" high x 6" diameter