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  • Place of origin:

    Flanders (made)

  • Date:

    late 15th century-early 16th century (made)

  • Artist/Maker:


  • Materials and Techniques:

    Brass, turned

  • Credit Line:

    Lt. Col. G. B. Croft-Lyons Bequest

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

From the 14th until the 17th centuries, brass candlesticks appeared in all but the most prosperous European houses, and were made in forms peculiar to the material.

Socketed candlesticks made their appearance in the late 13th century and thereafter became relatively common, replacing the earlier pricket form, at least for domestic use. The earliest sockets were polygonal in cross-section; by the 15th century they were round. At first, two vertical apertures were cut into the socket to facilitate the extraction of the burnt-out stub. Over time these became smaller and by the 15th century they tended to be horizontally cut.

The form of the stem and base of candlesticks at this time is the result of a complicated interplay between two typological currents. The first type naturally evolved from the simple European pricket candlestick, where the shaft is supported on three legs. The second type originated in the Near East and had a high cylindrical or slightly conical base surmounted by a flat circular wax pan and a short circular stem. These candlesticks were introduced into Europe by the Muslim community in Venice from the 14th century and account for the high bell-shaped bases that appear on many northern European and Saracenic candlesticks during this period.

Broadly speaking the development of the base can be attributed to Near Eastern influence, while the stem, which gradually became longer, with an increasingly complicated range of knops and balusters, is largely European in origin.

Physical description

Deep circular moulded foot with spreading base and projecting up-turned rim; the stem is with five flattened knops; the socket has two oblong holes.

Place of Origin

Flanders (made)


late 15th century-early 16th century (made)



Materials and Techniques

Brass, turned


Height: 10 in, Diameter: 4.75 in

Descriptive line

Brass candlestick with five flattened knops on the stem and two holes in the socket, Flemish, late 15th - early 16th century






Metalwork; Lighting


Metalwork Collection

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