This beautiful, antique fireplace chimney was hand fashioned in brick red, Languedoc marble, with the typical prominent, white mottling; the entablature featuring a mantel overhanging the decorative frieze, carved with a central shell and fruit and floral swags. Decorative pilasters add interest to the jambs and the finely moulded firebox surround.
Red Languedoc marble has been extracted from several quarries in the Languedoc-Roussillion area since the 16th century. The color ranges from orange red to bright red with distinctive white veining. This marble was used extensively in the 18th century primarily in architecture on walls and fireplaces, as well as furniture and marquetry. This prized marble is seen extensively in the Palace of Versailles. Today it is considered one of the rarest and hardest varieties of French marble.
DATE Late 18th century
DIMENSIONS Width 57 Depth 16 Height 41 in. Firebox: Width 34 Height 27.5 in.
CONDITION Note: chip (right leg).