A very old, rare and delicately decorated Bisque Porcelain Holy Water Font, from the family home of Michael Collins, the famous Irish Republican Revolutionary and politician. This larger than average font is continental, most probably Italian and the Bisque Porcelain has been beautifully decorated in muted hues of blue and green and embellished with gold. Only the inside surface of the font is glazed, and the body of the Madonna and the outer decoration has been left in the bisque matt finish.
We bought the font from a professional dealer in Ireland, who aquired a job 'lot' from the Collins family estate at an auction; when he bought the box he wasn't really sure what was in it. When he sold it to us, it was so dirty and dusty that we actually thought that it had no colour and expected a plain finish on the font. It was only when we got home and gave it a light cleaning that we found the lovely colours emerging. There is still cleaning to be done, but the hand-painted face of the Madonna is an absolute joy, and the condition is near perfect. There is a small hairline flaw in the glaze just at the top of the bowl and this is also at the back - but it looks as though this was present at the point of firing, and is not damage. The item is exceptionally beautiful; we don't know why it came to be in the box, but the connection to the family of Michael Collins, the face of the Irish revolution, makes it more perfect.
The font is 9.5" or 24cm high, by 4.5" or 12cm wide and 3" or 7.5cm deep. Without packaging, it weighs 357 grammes.
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