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image XF334
Sinumbra lamp, XF333. ©Sir John Soane's Museum, London.

Sinumbra lamp

Tôle with shade of frosted glass

Museum number: XF334

Curatorial note

French c.1810-20.

After it was purchased for the Museum a metal plate was made for the base to stabilise it. This was grained by Jane Wilkinson to match the surface of the card table on which it stands.

Provenance help-art-provenance

The pair of lamps XF333 and XF334 was purchased in 1992 for the Museum by Sir John Soane's Museum Society as part of the policy of Peter Thornton (Curator 1984-1995) to try to bring back authentic lighting into the Museum. See SM Archive: Trustees Minute Book V, pp.81 and 98. In the inventory box is an 'invoice' headed 'on approval' from Denton Antiques, 156 Kensington Church Street 18 Dec 1992 for 'Pair of early 19th century Sinumbra lamps. Restored and adapted for electricity, with suitable shades. £2250 + VAT ... £2643.75'. A note attached to the bill in Peter Thornton's handwriting, to the Museum's fundraiser Julian Spicer, reads 'These are the ones on the 'pier-tables' in the S. Drg Rm. They are very suitable but can we afford them at present: (they need better shades and various other adjustments). / An argument for buying lamps now is that the prices will go up as soon as the trade has recognised the importance of lighting as a result of the current Temple Newsam exhibition. 31/12/92. PKT'. However, there is a further invoice from Puig Antiques, 51 Pembridge Road, London W11, 29/5/1992 with covering note 'I was pleased to hear you accepted teh tole lamps as they have finally come to rest in a good home. Please find enclosed the invocie. Gaynor Puig. invocie is for 'A pair of early 19th century tole lamps. £3,500 and was paid on 29 May 1992.

Associated objects

XF333, pair

If you have any further information about this object, please contact us: worksofart@soane.org.uk