Lot 12
  • 12

A pair of patinated and gilt-bronze candelabra, French Empire

20,000 - 30,000 EUR
35,000 EUR
bidding is closed


  • patinated bronze, gilt bronze
each with a putto supporting three candlearms in the form of hunting horns, kneeling on the head of a boar, the base with allegorical figures 

Catalogue Note

In 1782, Tsarevich Paul and his wife Maria Feodorovna travelled to France under the alias Comte and Comtesse du Nord. The future sovereigns were splendidly received by Louis XVI and Marie-Antoinette and several members of the Royal family.

In her mémoires, Madame d'Oberkirch, the childhood friend of the Comtesse du Nord mentions the gifts offered by Louis XVI and Marie-Antoinette – notably the famous Sèvres porcelain toilette including the couple’s desire to purchase works of art which led them to the Parisian marchand-mercier, Dominique Daguerre and many of his suppliers: En sortant de la comédie, nous retournâmes dans les boutiques, en particulier chez les ébénistes et les quincailliers (Baronne d'Oberkirch, Mémoires, Paris, 2000, p. 234).

Tsar in 1796, Paul Ist of Russia continued to collect works of art and fashionable items in Paris. Between June 1798 and October 1799, he bought more than five hundreds decorative bronzes (I. Zek, "Bronzes d'ameublement et meubles français achetés par Paul Ier pour le Château Saint-Michel de Saint-Pétersbourg en 1798-1799" in Bulletin de la Société de l'Histoire de l'Art Français, 1994). His architect, Vincenzo Brenna was commissioned to order pieces from the French merchants who had established themselves in Saint-Petersburg, such as Barthélémy Defarge and André Scholtzen : on 13 August 1798, the latter delivered girandoles à trois lumières représentant des Enfants nus portant des cors de chasse formant trois bobèches dorées au mat sur des piédouches de même garnis d'attributs de chasse, intended to decorate the château Michel that the Tsar inaugurated on the 1st of February, 1801. However, Tsar Paul I had little time to enjoy his new palace as he was assassinated forty days later. Thereafter, the furniture at the château Michel was dispersed to the Winter Palace, the Strelna Palace, the Tauride Palace and the Pavlovsk Palace (E. Ducamp, Pavlovsk, Les collections, Paris, 1993, t. II, p. 178).

Today a similar pair of candelabra are exhibited in the Peace Salon at the entrance of Maria Feodorovna’s appartments at Pavlovsk Palace. Furthermore, several rare models are known, amongst them a pair from the Sigismond Bardac Collection sold Sotheby's, Paris in the Les Dillée : une dynastie d'experts et de collectionneurs sale of 18 March, 2015, lot 127, proving that our pair of candelabra with its distinctive base would have proved a popular purchase at the beginning of the 19th century.