An unusual Georgian lead death mask mould c. 1800
An unusual lead death mask in solid lead and therefore extremely heavy. Death masks were a likeness usually cast in wax or plaster after a person’s death by taking an impression from the body. Such masks were often used to serve as a model for a bust or statue. Death masks were usually hollow at the back as they had been taken over the face. To find one, which is extremely heavy, in solid lead is unusual and poses further questions. This was most likely a mould from which further multiple masks could be cast. There are four holes to the back, possibly where it was kept still by pegs as further plaster or wax masks were cast. The features are clear with closed eyes, often seen in death masks, and traces of the hair at the top.
A delightfully unusual and early piece.
Measuring: 21 cm high
British, c. 1800