Wednesday, 7 August 2019

Monday, 5 August 2019

Simon Vierpyl - The Library Busts formerly in Charlemont House, Dublin.




The Library Busts in Charlemont House, Dublin.
by Simon Vierpyl.

The library is long demolished.

For an excellent short illustrated overview of the history and architecture of Charlemont see

https://www.hughlane.ie/phocadownload/charlemont%20house-a%20critical%20history.pdf

Charlemont House was built in 1763 and designed by William Chambers for James Caulfeild, the 1st Earl of Charlemont. It is a brick fronted mansion on North Dublin's Parnell Square (formerly Rutland Square). 

Lord Charlemont had met and befriended Sir William Chambers in Italy while Chambers was on his Grand Tour and Charlemont was on a collecting trip. Some years later, he hired Chambers to design the Casino at his estate at Marino in Dublin, and later his townhouse – Charlemont House.

Charlemont’s extravagant building and collecting left his estate in financial difficulties and his successor the 2nd Earl sold everything but Charlemont House, the Casino and Marino house.



It was purchased by the government in 1870 and since 1933 it has housed the Hugh Lane Dublin City Gallery.

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The visitor to Charlemont’s library complex first passed down a long passage with windows on the right, looking out on to the garden, and niches on the left, filled with statues. 

Half-way down this confined space a lobby was set, a temporary haven of open space and light. This was occupied by Giovanni da Bologna’s famous bronze Mercury – wonderfully slight in contrast to the solid architecture of the setting – and contained a short flight of steps to accommodate the rising
ground to the rear



Charlemont Hose Library, Dublin with the bust of General Wolfe by Joseph Wilton 
and the classical busts by Simon Vierpyl.









General Wolfe

Joseph Wilton

National Gallery of Canada

Bequeathed by Lord Roseberry, Dalmeny House, West Lothian, Scotland 1975.






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Charlemont House, 'The Rockingham Library' with a bust of Lord Rockingham by Nollekens.

Charles Watson-Wentworth, 2nd Marquess of Rockingham, KG, PC, FRS (13 May 1730 – 1 July 1782), styled The Hon. Charles Watson-Wentworth before 1733, Viscount Higham between 1733 and 1746, Earl of Malton between 1746 and 1750 and The Marquess of Rockingham





Lord Rockingham.

by Joseph Nollekens.
Marble Bust.

Birmingham Museum.

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Burke recorded that no bust was made of Lord Rockingham during his lifetime, Nollekens’s head being ‘made from a masque taken from his face after his Death’.

Nollekens produced two patterns of bust using the head from the Wentworth Woodhouse statue and presumably predating it. 

The more common, with loose classical drapery showing the ribbon and star of the Garter, is represented at Althorp, Dalmeny, Muncaster Castle and Birmingham Museum & Art Gallery (illus. M. Whinney, Sculpture in Britain 1530-1830, 1964, pl.123). 

Another, given to Lord Charlemont in 1788 for his Rockingham Library at Charlemont House, Dublin, belonged to his descendants in London in 1873 (Sir George Scharf's Sketch Books, 87/63) and letters from Lady Rockingham to Lord Charlemont described the production of this bust under Lady Rockingham’s direction (F. Hardy, Memoirs of Lord Charlemont, 1812, II, pp 227-31).

The second type of Nollekens bust, showing different curls on the wig and peer’s robes over a Garter ribbon, is represented in the Palace of Westminster (from Wentworth Woodhouse; illus. M. Bond, Works of Art in the House of Lords, 1980, p 104) and at Goodwood.

Text above from NPG website see:



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For Lord Rockingham's portraits see:



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Work on the house resumed briefly about 1788, when, in a personal gesture inspired not least by political circumstances, Charlemont set about the addition of a third library, dedicated to the memory of the late Lord Rockingham. To design the extension Charlemont asked James Gandon, formerly Chambers’s pupil and at that time recognized as the country’s finest architect.

Despite the pressures of public works, Gandon felt that he ‘could not hesitate in complying with the urgent request of my earliest patron and friend’. Reached through a new opening created in Chambers’s corridor, Gandon’s Rockingham Library was a long symmetrical room, with columnar screens dividing off the curved end-walls and circular windows above the columns.

Clearly the arrangement paid homage to Chambers’s earlier designs. Once again books and sculpture complemented the architecture, with a posthumous portrait of Lord Rockingham by Josep Nollekens set over the fireplace and copies of Roman busts above the bookcases.

 The busts, by Charlemont’s sculptor and friend Simon Vierpyl (c. 1725–1810), numbered seventy-eight in all, and were passed to the Royal Irish Academy in 1868.

However, they are a small and fortunate survival from the earl’s collections. The library was dispersed in 1865, with the succession of the third earl, most of it destroyed by fire before the actual sale.

Many of the fittings of the house were removed to the country estate at Roxborough, Co. Tyrone, then undergoing modernisation but dismantled in the early twentieth century.

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Described by Lewis in 1837 as, “The private library of the Earl of Charlemont is highly worthy of notice. It is contained in a building attached to the town residence in Palace-row: the entrance to it is by a long gallery, ornamented with antique busts, vases, and altars, which opens into a large vestibule lighted by a lantern, which contains the works on antiquities and numismatics, and has in a recess the statue of Venus and eight busts of ancient and modern characters of celebrity. The principal library contains a fine and well-selected collection of ancient and modern writers on most departments of literature and some of science, very judiciously and happily arranged; also some manuscripts, and an unique collection of Hogarth’s engravings, mostly proofs. Over the chimney-piece is a fine bust of Homer. Attached to the library is a small museum, a medal room, and a smaller library of very elegant proportions, containing busts of the Earl of Rockingham and General Wolfe.”



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The Charlemont House Terracotta busts.

Simon Vierpyl c. 1725 - 1810.


For Simon Vierpyl see -

http://athyeyeonthepast.blogspot.com/1997/12/simon-vierpyl.html


For correspondence between Vierpyl and Murphy see:


see - http://casinomarino.ie/wp-content/uploads/2016/06/1774-Vierpyl-to-Murphy-12-R-13-1-4-pages-PDF.compressed.pdf


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Deatail from a painting by John Trotter


https://www.igs.ie/conservation/project/city-assembly-house-a-history


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Simon Vierpyl - List of Works:


1. 1762. Lady Donneraile (†1761) Funerary Monument, St Patrick’s Cathedral, Dublin.

2. c1750. Statue of Silenus and the infant Bacchus, cast for a marble copy. untraced.

3. 1749-1751. Statues of Apollino and Clapping faun. Wentworth Woodhouse, W R Yorks, marble saloon, niches (1967) for Lord Rockingham.

4. 1752-1753.  Statues of  Apollino and the Clapping Faun, For Thomas Howard commissioned with two marble tables and six gesso busts. untraced.

5. 1751-1755 - 22 statues after the antique. Irish Royal Academy (1768).

6. 1755.  Statue ‘Fighting Gladiator’ (Borghese gladiator) Irish Royal Academy (1868).

7. 1756  ‘Little Apollo’ (Apollino) and Farnese Mercury    Statue   Irish Royal Academy (1868).

8. pre-1769 Dying gladiator (Dying Gaul) Statue, Wilton House, Wilts (? still in situ).

9. c.1752-Bust of Pythagoras (perhaps connected with a mould taken with Cardinal Albani’s assistance and packed for shipping to England with Lord Dartmouth’s heads of Seneca and Cicero                   untraced.

10. 1747-1754 busts of Seneca and Cicero, after originals in Florence for Lord Dartmouth. Untraced.

11. 1751-1755 78 busts of Roman Emperors. Royal Irish Academy (37 or more).

12. 1755-1756 – Busts of Brutus, Pompey and Caesar, in bronze and another set in red marble     untraced.

13. 1758. Bust of Dr Claudius Gilbert.Trinity College, Dublin, Long Room.

14. 1761 Bust of Provost Baldwin (†1758) Trinity College, Dublin, Long Room.

15. by 1768 - Epicurus and Pythagoras, Busts – untraced.

16. Busts Commodus, Marcus Aurelius, Caracalla, Faustina. untraced.

17. Bust Robert Clayton, Bishop of Clogher (†1785). Trinity College, Dublin, Long Room.

18.  Three busts of the Farnese Homer (conceivably not executed). Untraced.

19. 1773. Chimneypiece - untraced.

20. 1756 Ornaments for the casino for Lord Charlemont, Marino, Clontarf, Dublin.

21. post-1773 Ornamental stone carving. King’s Hospital, Dublin (former Bluecoat School).

22. 1769 – 1779. Ornamental stone carving,  Architectural Sculpture. City Hall, Dublin.

23. Ornamental stone carving Architectural Sculpture  nd. St Thomas’s church, Marlborough Street, Dublin.


24. Ornamental stone carving,  Architectural Sculpture  nd. Royal Exchange, Dublin.

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The 78 Roman busts.
Simon Vierpyl
Terracotta
under life size




Aelius Verus

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Agripina Minor






Annius Verus

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Antonius Pius

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Augustus

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Balbinus

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Caligula

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Caracalla

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Clodius Albinus

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Comodus

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Crispina

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Didius Julianus

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Diadumenium

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Domitia Longinus

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Domitian

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Drusus

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Faustina II

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Faustina

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Galba

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Gallianus

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Germanicus

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Geta

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Gordian II

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Gordianus Africanus

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Gordianus Pius


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Heliogabalus

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Herrenius Etruscas

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Hostilianus


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Julia Domna

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Julia Flavia

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Julia Mamaea


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Julia Saemis


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Julius Caeser

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Lollia Paulina


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Lucius Verus

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Macrinus

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Manlia Scantilla


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Marcus Aurelius

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Matidia

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Maximus


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Messalina


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Philipus

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Nero

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Nerva


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Otho


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Pertinax

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Plotina

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Sabina

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Salonina

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Septimus Severus

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Tiberius

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Titus

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Trajan

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Trajanus Decius.

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Trabonianus Gallus

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Vaspasian

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Vitellius

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Volusian

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Limestone Chimneypiece in Hugh Lane Gallery, formerly Charlemont House, Dublin
attributed to Simon Vierpyl.

Image from the excellent Irish Aesthete website.

Heartily recommended to anyone with an interest in Irish Architecture and Art.

https://theirishaesthete.com/2015/05/20/6794/






Design for the Hall Chimneypiece - Charlemont House,Dublin

Sir William Chambers (British (born Sweden), Göteborg 1723–1796 London).

1762

Pen and brown ink, brush and gray wash
18.4 x 22.3 cm
Bought Harris Brisbane Dick Fund, 1934.
Metropolitan Museum New York.




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"A panel from the pedestal on which rests one of the lions at the four corners of the casino at Marino, County Dublin (see Casino Royale, March 25th). Although the building was designed by Sir William Chambers, the work here was overseen by Engish sculptor Simon Vierpyl who had first met his patron, the Earl of Charlemont when both men were in Rome in the 1750s. 

Chambers gave due credit when he wrote of the casino that it ‘was built by Mr Verpyle [sic] with great neatness and taste.’ 

The Portland stone used for the exterior was imported from England and presumably carved on site under Vierpyl’s supervision. It is astonishing to see that some 250 years later despite exposure to the elements the two figures of winged fauns are still as sharp as ever, down to the curls on their respective heads".



Text and image again from the Irish Aesthete

https://theirishaesthete.com/2013/04/27/mythical-beasts/


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Giovanni Battista Cipriani, R.A. (1727-1785).

Studies for statues of pedestals of Apollo, Venus, Bacchus and Ceres, for the Marino Casino, Clontarf, Co. Dublin.


All with inscriptions 'By Sir W. Chambers for The Earl of Charlemont 1760' (lower left)
four pencil, pen and black ink, brown wash, one pencil, pen and black ink, one with watermark Villedary, one with watermark 'GR', one with partial watermark fleur-de-lys
10 x 5¾ in. (25.4 x 14.6 cm.); and smaller. 

Christie's - Lot 113. 3 July 2012.

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This letter refers to the five designs (Venus was revised) for the four attic statues that Cipriani designed for Charlemont, for the Casino. A translation is below.

My Lord, I didn’t touch with the pen the other figure of Venus, whose sketch I had the honour to show you, it not being different in the edge outline to that I formerly gave her along with the Ceres, and the Apollo, except a little in the left arm is lower and outstretched, therefore in the event that your excellency does not approve this design, the sculptor can easily amend [it]. In the meantime I presume to wish your Excellence a very happy journey and offer my very humble services and with profound respect give myself the honour of bowing… Your humble and devoted servant, GB Cipriani

From



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Design for the Casino Marino, Clontarf, Dublin.

William Chambers

This design was used in Chambers Treatise on Civil Architecture 1759.

Victoria and Albert Museum




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I have written previously at some length about Sculpture in Ireland in the 18th Century
see -





https://english18thcenturyportraitsculpture.blogspot.com/2017/10/statue-of-st-george-ussher-st-george.html