Saturday, April 5, 2014

Unusual Artifacts: A German Gutterspout, c. 1600

C. 1600, German
The Victoria & Albert Museum

Sadly, gone are the days of decorative gutterspouts.  However, for centuries, artisans and builders seized every opportunity to add something beautiful or ornamental to almost every surface of a building. 

Elaborate and whimsical gutterspouts are characteristic of southern German blacksmith's work of the Seventeenth Century.  These often took the form of Grotesques or Gargoyles.  This example of iron is embossed and painted and depicts a devil's head with small wings sprouting at the sides.

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