An Impressive Antique Istrian Wellhead with Original Wrought Iron Overhang. Circa 1890.
Square carved marble in the form of a capital with carved elaborate foliage sweeping down from the corners to the base.
Sides ornamented with symbolic motifs carved in shallow relief including: a single handled water vessel and a double handled water vessel, an armorial shield and a tudor rose; such motifs were often seen on wellheads dating from the 16th through the 19th centuries. One such example can be seen at Hever Castle in Kent England.
Another very similar example, is an antique carved Istrian wellhead from the fine Seago Collection in London that was auctioned in 1999. The last two pictures show the Seago wellhead and description.
"Of all the garden ornaments we collect and admire, the Venetian wellhead seems most imbued with both historic importance and romantic spirit. It tells a story like no other and adds an almost regal weight to a garden. Wellheads first played a vital role in Venetian culture, but then took on an equally important second life– this time as coveted art objects collected (i.e. pillaged) by dealers, connoisseurs, and travelers on the Grand Tour."
From an article by Eva Schwartz
To learn more about the history of wellheads, please read our blog post.