A magnificent and rare late 18th Century "Summer Grate".
This very important George III grate is fashioned in bright cut polished steel. It is a most generously large grate with very finely etched and engraved foliate and acanthus designs and applied beading, a skirt of lozenge cut paterae, vase shaped finials and chamfered etched legs very much in the Neo-classical style and clearly showing the influence of Robert Adam (1728-1792).
There is an identical grate in the V&A Museum, London which is believed to have been made in the late 18th century by an iron founder named Henry Jackson of Saffron Hill, Smithfield, a copy of his trade card is below.
This type of grate was called a dog grate but became more commonly known as a "Summer Grate" because the expensively etched front could be lifted off during the winter months, to protect it from damage when the fire was lit, thereby revealing behind the more simply etched second grate front. It would almost certainly have been specially commissioned to complement a grand chimneypiece.
There are two other known identical grates both in Spencer House, an 18th century mansion built in 1756-66 in St. James's, London.
English, Circa 1790.
SCALE: V. Large
Link to: Antique fire grates and log baskets.