Kominki z Krakowa

Kominki z Krakowa

What parts does a Classical chimneypiece consist of?


In a typical antique chimneypiece there has been a tendency to follow the classical order with the three basic parts:


1 – horizontal, a low base, i.e. a plinth sited on a foundation – a platform;


2 – vertical brackets / in the form of columns, pilasters*), herms*) or statues – (Caryatides, atlases also known as atlants) embedded in the risalits*)


*) A pilaster - a flattened or rectangular column built into or applied to the face of the wall with the base, shaft and the capital;


*) A herm – a quadrangle pillar built into the face of the wall, crowned with a head or a bust;


*) A risalit – a projecting part of the wall being a back support without a base and a capital


3 – a vertical crowning / lintel, in the form of an entablature


- from the bottom: an architrave*), a frieze *) and a cornice*)


*) An architrave – called also an epistyle - the lowest moulded stepped back band, holding the rest of the lintel;


*) A frieze – the wide central part of an entablature often decorated with an ornament or a bas-relief;


*) A cornice – the upper slanting part of the entablature, a moulded projection which serves as a mantel shelf to site fireplace decorations.


3 – cont. – In some models extending the columns are projecting square tablets of the plinths and at the level of the frieze, there are cubical panels of the imposts.


In order to economize on the cost of heating, nowadays, / high heating effectiveness/ the former palace open fireplaces are being replaced by those with fireplace inserts with the ceramic glass window in the door and the cast-iron or steel-chamotte firebox. In that case the chimneypiece also has:


4 – the framing of the insert door i.e. the masking part that includes;


- a doorstep / stylobate/ in front of the hearth;


- three movable masking panels, size-fitted to the fireplace insert door;

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