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A pair of Neo-classical tole obelisks, circa 1800

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Directory: Antiques: Decorative Art: Metals: Pre 1800: item # 1247529

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Chicora Antiques, Inc.
518 Autumn Circle
Columbia, South Carolina
18038343787

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A pair of Neo-classical tole obelisks, circa 1800
A fine pair of French or English tole painted Ne0-classical period Obelisks, with polychrome decorations in burgundy red, with gilt-highlights, depicting a cherub playing with a hound below faux-marble verte-antico green pyramid tops, circa 1790-1810. The origin of the obelisk goes back as far as ancient Egypt. It is thought to symbolize the sun god Ra, and during the brief religious reformation of Akhenaten, it was said to be a petrified ray of the Athen, or Sun-disk, as it was thought that the god existed within the structure. It has been recently hypothesized by New York University Egyptologist, Patricia B. Gary, and Richard Talcott, senior editor of the publication “Astronomy“, that the shapes of the ancient Egyptian ancient pyramid and obelisk were derived from natural phenomena associated with the sun (coincidentally, the sun god “Ra”, was the Egyptians’ greatest deity), an interesting theory which would seem correct. The ancient pyramid and obelisk might have been inspired by this previously overlooked astronomical phenomena connected with the rising and setting of the Sun, with the zodiacal light and sun pillars respectively. The Ancient Romans were strongly influenced by the obelisk form, to the extent that there are now more than twice as many obelisks standing in Rome as remain in Egypt. All fell after the Roman period except for the Vatican obelisk and were re-erected in different locations. Tole is simply sheet or tin-metal that has been lacquered or enameled and used decoratively. It is almost always brightly painted, gilded or both. It was quite popular in France and England in the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries. The present pair of tole obelisks are rare and in a near immaculate state of preservation. HEIGHT: 30".


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