Pair of Candlesticks

Etienne Martincourtabout 1780

The J. Paul Getty Museum

The J. Paul Getty Museum
Los Angeles, United States

In his book Directions to Servants,written in 1745, Jonathan Swift advised,

Avoid burning daylight, and to save your master's candles never bring them up till half an hour after it be dark, although they are called for ever so often. . . . There is nothing wherin the skill of a butler more appears than in the management of candles.

Candles, along with firelight, were the only sources of illumination after dark in the 1700s. Candlesticks made from bronze, silver, pewter, or wood, with one or two branches, were the most popular mobile light source. These candlesticks, with their crisp fluting and chasing, are engraved underneath with the name Étienne Martincourt, one of the main suppliers of bronzes to the duchesse de Mazarin.

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  • Title: Pair of Candlesticks
  • Creator: Etienne Martincourt
  • Date: about 1780
  • Location Created: Paris, France
  • External Link: Find out more about this object on the Museum website.
  • Medium: Gilt bronze
  • Source Credit Line: The J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles
  • Object Type: Candlestick
  • Object Status: Permanent Collection
  • Number: 72.DF.48
  • Display Location: Currently on view at: Getty Center, Museum South Pavilion, Gallery S113
  • Department: Sculpture & Decorative Arts
  • Culture: French
  • Classification: Decorative Arts