A Roman late 16th century lock-plate and hasppossibly from the foundry of Jacopo (c. 1520-1604) and Ludovico (fl. 1551-1601) del Duca
Lot 1
A Roman late 16th century lock-plate and hasp possibly from the foundry of Jacopo (c. 1520-1604) and Ludovico (fl. 1551-1601) del Duca
Sold for £8,750 (US$ 14,198) inc. premium

Lot Details
A Roman late 16th century lock-plate and hasp
possibly from the foundry of Jacopo (c. 1520-1604) and Ludovico (fl. 1551-1601) del Duca
with the original, simple iron lock riveted on behind, the hasp designed with a standing classical maiden above a heraldic crest, the lock plate decorated with reclining male and female gods, below torsos surmounted by helmets, flanked by borders with urns above cartouches and lion masks, the key hole within a 'C'-scroll cartouche, 18cm wide, 23cm high (7" wide, 9" high).

Footnotes

  • This type of lock-plate and hasp is fascinating on account of the fact that on the tip of the hasp there is a shield of arms, these provide clues as to the identities of the families that commissioned them. It has become apparent in the course of research that they were made in Rome, in a bronze-foundry that was adept at 'customising' the hasps with the impaled arms of individual married couples. From the dates of marriages of several of the couples an average date of around 1585-1600 emerges. During this time span, the strongest candidate for the production is the foundry of Jacopo (c. 1520-1604) and Ludovico (fl. 1551-1601) del Duca, whose other, more important, activities have recently been published (J. Montagu, Gold, Silver and Bronze, Metal Sculpture of the Roman Baroque, New Haven / London, 1996, pp. 19-28, figs. 30-35).

    This may have been a cheaper expedient than commissioning a woodcarver to produce the heavy, domestic wedding cassoni that were then fashionable, with the coats-of-arms of the newly-wed couple carved separately at opposite ends of the piece of furniture. These lock-plates, enlivened by gilding, provided the same heraldic and dynastic information, but were applied to lighter, travelling cassoni.


    A similar lock-plate and hasp sold in these rooms, 15 April 2008, lot 1 (£14,800).
    Another similar example can be seen in the Rjiksmuseum, Amsterdam, inv. 14348.

    Literature:
    Charles Avery, "Fontainebleau, Milan, or Rome? A Mannerist Bronze Lockplate and Hasp", in Charles Avery, Studies in Italian Sculpture, London, 2001, p. 382, "New Entries", no. 44, fig. 21.
    Onno ter Kuile 'Koper & Brons' Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam, 1986, no. 332.
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