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Firebacks originated in France in the fifteenth century with their main purpose being to protect the clay fire chamber from the effects of heat, there was also the added benefit of retaining and radiating heat back into the room.  They can increase heat efficiency by up to 50%!  Firebacks would originally have been cast in a local blacksmiths foundry for the nobility or local noteworthy families, therefore they tended to be highly decorated for that specific family in designs that illustrated their heritage.  The Royalty would also commission firebacks with designs incorporating coats of arms and politics also played a big part with social events being portrayed.  You will also see them designed for reputable tradesmen highlighting their skills.  As well as their intended purpose we have also noticed a recent fashion for using them as kitchen splashbacks!

Width x Height

Lion & Unicorn Fireback (restored) – late 19th Century.  Classic fireback design showing the lion and unicorn flanking a crest topped with a crown, 24″ x 20″, £220 + vat.  FPB0009

Rose & Portcullis Fireback – two symbols that appeared in the badges of the Tudors starting with Henry VII, 16″ x 22″, £180 + vat.  FPB0004

Lion with Sword Fireback – 19th Century with the lion in the centre beneath a crown and with columns on either side depicting symbols associated with military and music,  20¼” x 26″, £275 + vat.  FPSOR37

Neoclassical Fireback – 19th Century depicting a man, woman and child, 12¼” x 16″, £120 + vat.  FPB0006

Griffin & Phoenix Fireback – 20th Century showing a griffin at the base and a phoenix above, 29″ x 26″, £180 + vat.  FPSOR36

Woman with Snake Fireback – 19th Century depicting a woman holding a snake (presumably Eve), 16½” x 23″.  £185 + vat.  FPBSOR1


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