FIREBOARD or SILENT COMPANION
- fireplace decoration
Made of wood and STRICTLY decorative. Not to be used as fire screen.
Hospitality figures, silent companions, picture boards all refer to dummy boards used in Colonial households. They depicted adults, children or pets in the 17th century in the Netherlands as primarily a room decoration to effect a presence in an empty room. They could brighten a bare corner, decorate a fireplace during non-use or amuse guests.
I had this Folk Art style "companion" custom made but chose to have it mounted on the wall and not with a floor brace. She is 28" tall and is shown holding a basket full of wildflowers accompanied by her companion kitty. Dress is mauve with lace at neckline, bottom of white apron and sleeves. Slight paint scraping at top from storage.
Here is an informative link I found on the 'net about the history of these silent companions/fire boards:
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