The Wallace Collection

The Wallace Collection, A Family Collection, A National Museum, An International Treasure House
  • Candlestick
  • Claude-Jean Pitoin (active between: c. 1778)
  • France
  • 1781
  • Gilt bronze and blue enamel
  • Height: 25.4 cm
    Diameter: 12.2 cm, base
  • F165
  • Study
Images & Media
Further Reading
  • This candlestick, one of a pair (with F164) of the highest quality, was delivered, together with another matching pair, in 1781 by Pitoin (master 1778) for the Cabinet de la Méridienne of Marie-Antoinette at Versailles. The present location of the other pair is unknown. Both pairs were part of the redecoration and refurbishing of the Cabinet de la Méridienne which was carried out in 1781 during Marie-Antoinette’s second pregnancy. The birth of the first dauphin of the reign, Louis (1781-99), is reflected in the dolphins on the candlesticks, and a tiny feur-de-lys is used as a repeated pattern in the trellis-work of the base.
    The casting and chasing is superb, being comparabel to the finest goldsmith's work. The gilding shows traces of having been in two tones of gold, the framework of the bases being redder than the yellow gilding of the trellis-work and of the dolphins.