Ancient Fireplaces in Situ Part 1


Antique Fireplace Prior to Reclamation in an Old Italian Mansion
Antique Fireplace Prior to Reclamation in an Old Italian Mansion

We do get asked a good question that we feel the need to address: Why not restore the structures and preserve this history within them for generations to come? And the simple answer to that question is that its impossible to restore every single structure ever built until the last century!

Cinque Terre May 26th 2011- A new meaning for people living on top of each other.
Cinque Terre May 26th 2011- A new meaning for people living on top of each other.

Both private and public owners around the world are constantly facing that same dilemma, to make the tough choice between what to restore and what not. As demand for the existing land slowly overtakes the preservation needs of earlier structures, (built-in the last few hundred years) the unfortunate choice becomes more obvious as a triage approach becomes necessary. The bright side to this story is that nothing gets wasted nowadays.

Antique Fireplace Mantle Prior to Reclamation
Antique Fireplace Mantle Prior to Reclamation

The image of a wrecking ball destroying great-grandpa’s cottage is a thing of the past. Thanks to the public awareness of multiple millions of professional and armature reclaimers alike, more people from around the world have developed a passion in reusing and restoring every single old fragment that gets demolished: from this old nails to that old wallpaper!

Ancient Farmhouse in Europe
A stunning antique fireplace in an ancient farmhouse in Europe

There are interesting stories to each reclaimed mantle because they usually capture the essence of the ancient structures they once came from.

Antique fireplace mantle in a french villa in Avignon Circa 1610 A.D.
Antique fireplace mantle in a french villa in Avignon Circa 1610 A.D.

Even when the fireplace origins are unknown it could still shed a bit of light about its lineage.

Reclaimed Mantle Avignon
Reclaimed Mantle Near the Town of Avignon

By knowing what to look for and paying attention to every minute detail within the mantles one can start understanding the hidden markers.

Reclaimed Mantle Maltese Stars
Reclaimed Mantle Maltese Stars

Just like in humans were the eyes could be the window to the soul, as they say, the mantle midsection could carry a ton of information on who the mantle owners were and what they held dear to their harts.

Ancient Limestone Lintle of an Antiqur Fireplace Mantle
Ancient Limestone Lintel of an Antique Fireplace Mantle with a French Coat-of-Arms

From a scribbled date or a capitalized initials, to a carved cote-of-arms or an angle cut of a keystone may be found and maybe indicative to the origins of each piece.

Reclaimed Mantles in situ in an Old coastal European private villa
Reclaimed Mantles in situ in an Old coastal Italian private villa

The general rule of thumb is that the more unique and individual an antique mantle was, the more pivotal the villa or mansion it must have been in.

Ancient Fireplace Reclaimed from Spain installed in a castle in California Circa 1650
Ancient Fireplace Reclaimed from Spain installed in a castle in California Circa 1650

Notably, as time went on, the stone fireplace mantle became a defining marker of nobility and a Status symbols in all European countries and kingdoms with no exception.

Reclaimed Mantle Villa Benata
Reclaimed Mantle Villa Benata

It became so much so ‘the’ status symbol that it was were many European families chose to carve their Heraldic arms and last names on, which in itself was the most important socioeconomic marker of the 13th century and still is in some ways.

Ancient Norman era fireplace mantle with a threatening coat of arms
Ancient Norman era fireplace mantle with a threatening coat of arms

To learn more please visit our Website at:  http://www.ancientsurfaces.com/Antique-Fireplaces.html

or call our sales office at: 212-461-0245

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http://issuu.com/ancientsurfaces/docs/ancient_surfaces_online_catalog

3 thoughts on “Ancient Fireplaces in Situ Part 1

  1. Hello. I’m Jonathan Sinclair head of sales at Ancient Surfaces.
    Thanks for our kind words and make sure you add us to your group of friends.
    We will be posting some exiting images of ancient fireplaces the farmhouses, villas and castles they came from and how they look in our clients homes.
    Thanks Jonathan Sinclair
    http://www.AncientSurfacs.com

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