Brideshead Reflected - a £150,000 pair of antique mirrors from the film set are to sell



2015-06-26 12:04:09

Brideshead Reflected - a 150,000 pair of antique mirrors from the film set are to sell

The beautiful and historic piece of film memorabilia will head a London Art and Furniture auction

Two important George II carved giltwood mirrors, part of a set of four commissioned for Castle Howard in Yorkshire, the stately home featured in the 1981 TV series and the 2008 film adaptation of Evelyn Waugh's novel Brideshead Revisited, are to be sold at Bonhams

Probably designed for Henry, 4th Earl of Carlisle (1694-1758) by John Vardy and showing the influence of his colleague William Kent, the mirrors have attracted a pre-sale estimate of 100,000 - 150,000.

Having passed by descent from Henry, 4th Earl of Carlisle through five generations, the mirrors were bought by a London dealer, Lionel Harris Junior, in 1929.

Three year later, in September 1932, Harris was contacted by the leading furniture historian and advisor R. W. Symonds, who had been employed by Francis A Lauder to find a pair of mirrors for Bowden Hall in Derbyshire.

Due to the depressed economic circumstances of the time, Symonds, who was behind some of the most important 20th century collections, managed to negotiate the purchase of two of the mirrors - although being sold as a set of four - with ease.

Rare antique pair of George II carved giltwood mirrors Antique George II carved giltwood mirror (Click to enlarge)

Harris wrote to Symonds: 'The four [mirrors] cost me 650. As I understand your client would require a pair, I would be willing to sell one of the pairs for 250 cash. At this price, they are very cheap, as in 1929 I was asking 900 for the four, and it is only in order to do some business that I am willing to cut a loss'.

Prior to being acquired by Lauder of Bowden Hall, one of the mirrors was exhibited at the Art Treasures Exhibition at Christie's on October 12 1932, held under the auspices of the British Antique Dealers Association.

Bonhams' Fine English Furniture and Works of Art sale takes place on November 3 2010 in London.

Recent and Related Articles...

Fair and Square: How a roulette table commissioned by a King resolved a dispute | 1 October 2010

Great inventor Sir Hiram Maxim was called upon to build furniture to test a Lord's ideas

Collectors can buy the lifestyle of an architect at this Paris auction | 29 September 2010

The furniture, art and architectural models of Le Corbusier and other design legends is up for sale

How do you furnish a 199m flat with collectibles? | 17 September 2010

With news that the Candy brothers have sold a 199m flat, we imagine how to furnish it

Grand Furniture & Decorative Arts auction comes to Massachusetts | 30 July 2010

Offering everything from weather vanes to marine arts, Skinner's sale is a must for Americana collectors

Bookcase with secret door used for George IV's Royal affair leads sale | 16 July 2010

The furnishing used by the King to visit his mistress Mrs Fitzherbert will sell from Chatsworth House

Images: Bonhams

Share on social media
Write a response...

The bookmarklet lets you save things you find to your collections.

Note: Make sure your bookmarks are visible.


Click and drag the Collect It button to your browser's Bookmark Bar.

collect it