Friday, 22 July 2016

Two Equestrian Statues of Charles II - Bronze at Windsor Lead in Edinburgh and an Equestrian Statue of William III in Dublin - all by Grinling Gibbons


The Two Equestrian Statues of Charles II.
by Grinling Gibbons,

and the Equestrian Statue of William III by Grinling Gibbons
formerly in College Green Dublin.

The Bronze at Windsor, Lead in Edinburgh 

Both statues of Charles II were cast from the same moulds.

The bronze equestrian statue of William III supplied by Gibbons to the Corporation of Dublin for College Green which was destroyed in 1928 is closely related to these statues, but the position of the front legs of the horse is reversed (see below).



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1. Charles II
Bronze.
Windsor Castle.






Bronze Charles II on a Portland Stone Pedestal.


 As a statement of loyalty to the King and to the royalist cause, this equestrian statue was commissioned for the Upper Ward at Windsor Castle by Tobias Rustat, valet to King Charles II and the most significant charity benefactor of the period.
  Horace Walpole in Anecdotes.........   states that Rustat also commissioned the Charles II in Chelsea Hospital and another behind Whitehall. 
The statue is the work of Grinling Gibbons, the Dutch woodcarver and sculptor working in England, appointed ‘Surveyor and Repairer of Carved Work at Windsor’ in 1682, and it was cast by the founder Josias Ibach whose signature is inscribed on the horse’s back left hoof ‘Josias Ibach Stada Bramesis 1679 FUDIT’.
Text and photograph - Royal Collection.
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Except below from the Royal Windsor Guide.... 1841







Both Vertue and Evelyn record this work as by Grinling Gibbons.


In 1682 Sir Christopher Wren writing to the Bishop of Oxford described this statue "the horse.... was first cut in wood by a German and then cast by one Ibeck a founder in London but this is the dearer way, if we can find a good statuary for brasse it will be better" Wren Soc. Vol22.
He appears to have been paid £1300.
The Dictionary of Sculpture 2009 reports that the inscription on the hoof "Josias Jback Stadti Blarensis" 1679 Fudit is cryptic but might mean that the sculptor came from Bever in Hanover.
It is suggested in The Royal Windsor Guide of 1841 that Ibach was from Bremen
Josias Ibeck fl. 1679 - 1710 is known to have been granted denization on 22 June 1694 which meant as a foreigner he was granted certain privileges including the right to hold land normally only allowed to the citizens of England. 
In 1709 he is listed in the rate books as a Figure Maker paying £20 per annum on a property at Stone Bridge, Hyde Park Corner (City of Westminster Archives), alongside neighbouring sculptors John van Nost I, Andrew Carpenter (Carpentier), Edward Hurst and Richard Osgood, and the Huguenot smith Jean Tijou.

He provided brass vases and an artificial tree for a fountaine ( probably with concealed water spouts) for Chatsworth and castings of shells for the Diana Fountain at Hampton Court now at Bushey Park.
Iback supplied silver fireplace furniture for Ham House - He charged £82 10s 9d for a pr of silver andyrons and a pr of silver dogs, and silver garniture for the iron pan' on 16th May 1763 and a further £34 10s 9d for a pr of silver dogs& silver garniture for ye shovel and tongues Iback also supplied a pair of brass andyrons for £8.
The Ham documents are the earliest references to his work and in April 1686 he is listed with London Goldsmiths company as an alien goldsmith.


He also produced sculpture for the Duchess of Lauderdale at Ham - he was paid £20 in advance for a 'figure doinge for her grace' on 30 October 1674.


Information on Iback's work at Ham House from Ham House, 400 years of Collecting and Patronage, edited by Christopher Rowell, Published by Yale, 2013.










 




Both of these photographs of the panels in the plinth courtesy

For two more low resolution photographs of the equestrian statue of see -  




Windsor Castle
Charles Wild (1781 - 1835).
Watercolour.
19.6 x 25.1 cms.
Royal Collection

This view of the Upper Ward shows the Quadrangle with the Round Tower to the west, in their original form, before Wyatville’s transformations in the following decade. As part of those changes the equestrian monument to Charles II was moved to the foot of the Round Tower mound, and turned around to face east, into the courtyard. To the right is the south façade of the northern range, containing the State Apartments, the entrance to which was through the archway at right. To the left is the west end of the southern range, including the archway of the ‘Rubbish Gate’, the chief entrance to the Quadrangle from the south at this time. The view records a number of the changes made for George III to the exterior of this part of the castle and in particular the replacement of the round-headed doors and windows - a hallmark of Hugh May’s work of the 1670s - with pointed openings and Gothic tracery. These features, introduced by James Wyatt in the early years of the nineteenth century, can be seen on the square tower at left (which contained apartments for the King’s sons) and along the whole of the right-hand façade; elsewhere, May’s windows were allowed to remain. The whole quadrangle was again transformed in the course of Wyatville’s work in the 1820s - particularly by the addition of the Grand Corridor around the eastern and southern ranges - but many of James Wyatt’s windows survived his nephew’s changes.
Info lifted from Royal Collection website.





Unknown Photographer
Platinum process
Mid 19th Century
24 x 29 cms



A very Early Photograph of the Equestrian Statue of Charles II
by Grinling Gibbons
Photograph by Arthur James Melhuish (1824 - 95).
1854 - 6.
36.5 x 48.7 cms.
Acquired by Queen Victoria.









Another Early Photograph of the Equestrian statue of Charles II by Grinling Gibbons
Albumen Print
16.4 x 24.2 cms.
George Washington Wilson (1823 - 93).
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2. Charles II.
Equestrian Statue
in Roman Armour.
Grinling Gibbons.
1685.
Lead.
Edinburgh.






 Equestrian statue of Charles the Second





The lead equestrian statue of King Charles II, is the oldest statue in Edinburgh, and one of the oldest lead statues in Britain. It was erected on 16th April 1685 at the expense of the Edinburgh Town Council as a tribute to King Charles II, "formed in the Roman manner, like one of the Caesars"
The plinth, in Craigleith sandstone - "ane handsome and fyne pedestill" - was executed by Robert Mylne, the Kings Master Mason in Scotland.

The statue was not completed until a month before his king's death; and the plinth was not ready until after his demise in February 1685. The burgh records of Edinburgh report "the King's majesties statu in metall is raddie to be put up in parliament close".

In total the statue and plinth cost £3,557- 2s-4d Scots, exclusive of a gratuitity paid to William Clerk for his composition of a Latin eulogy to the King, which is inscribed on the east side of the base:

TO CHARLES THE SECOND, MOST AUGUST AND MOST MAGNIFICENT, THE INVINCIBLE RULER OF BRITAIN, FRANCE AND IRELAND, UPON WHOSE BIRTH DIVINE PROVIDENCE SMILED AT THE VERY MOMENT WHEN A STAR WAS CONSPICUOUS IN THE NOONDAY SKY*, AND WHO, AFTER A YOUTH SPENT IN ARMS AFTER HIS FATHER AND AFTER THE LATTER HAD IN THE END BEEN BEHEADED, MAINTAINED HIS OWN RIGHT FOR TWO YEARS WITH ENERGY INDEED BUT WITHOUT SUCCESS; FOR UNABLE TO COPE WITH A REBELLION THAT WAS TOO OFTEN VICTORIOUS, HE WAS COMPELLED TO CHANGE HIS COUNTRY FOR ALMOST A DECADE. ABROAD, HOWEVER, DESPITE THE PACTS, THE WILES, THE THREATS, AND THE MILITARY POWER OF THE USURPER, HE WAS DEFENDED AND PROTECTED BY THE WATCHFULNESS OF HEAVEN, AND AT LENGTH EMERGING LIKE THE SUN, ALL THE BRIGHTER FROM THE CLOUDS THAT HAD ENVELOPED HIM, HE RETURNED TO HIS OWN REALMS WITHOUT ANY SHEDDING OF BLOOD AND SIMPLY THROUGH RECOGNITIONOF HIS LAWFUL CLAIM, WHEREUPON HE ESTABLISHED, ENLARGED, STRENGTHENED AND CONFIRMED THE CHURCH, THE STATE, PEACE AND COMMERCE. THEN, WINNING FAME BY HIS WAR WITH HOLLAND, HE STRAIGHTWAY BECAME ARBITER OF PEACE AND WAR BETWEEN EMBATTLED NEIGHBOURS. FINALLY, WHEN THE OLD REBELLION RECENTLY SHOWED SIGNS OF RECRUDESCENCE, HE CHECKED THE BASILISK WHILE IT WAS STILL IN EMBRYO, CRUSHED IT AND TROD IT UNDERFOOT BY SHEER SAGACITY AND NOT BY FORCE OF ARMS. TO HIM, THEREFORE, A PRINCE OF MARVELS, IN A SEASON OF PROFOUND PEACE AND AT THE HEIGHT OF HIS GLORY [THIS MONUMENT IS ERECTED]

In 1766 it was "in great disrepair and in hazard of falling" and in 1769 £8- 12s-6d was paid to Alexander Nicholson for "repairing Charles II and plumber work…" (plumber from the Latin 'plumbum' - lead). And in 1786 John Donaldson painted the statue and pedestal with three coats of ‘strong [white lead] paint’.

The inscription plaque was removed in 1817 to a vault in Parliament House, and in 1824 when the statue and pedestal were in a poor state of repair they were removed to Calton Jail, while St. Giles was being rebuilt.

Later in 1835 when it was rebuilt, £30-6s-6d was paid to the superintendent who was thanked "for his kind and gratious services in supervising the repairs on the Horse, whose symmetry has been rendered more perfect than ever by his attentions".

Major repairs were  undertaken in the 1920s when cracks in the lead allowed water to corrode the internal iron armatures, which burst the leadwork.

The most recent repairs were carried out in 2010- 2011.
For more on the conservation of this fine statue see -
Hall conservation say that here were remains of the original? green paint suggesting that it had been painted to resemble bronze.













Equestrian Statue of Charles II at Edinburgh by Grinling Gibbons.
Anonymous 17th Century Engraving.

362 x 206 mm.
British Museum

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3. Equestrian Statue of William III
by Grinling Gibbons
Bronze
1701.
Formerly at College Green, Dublin.

Damaged by the IRA on 11 November 1928 and subsequently removed.









 


























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