From Latin candelabrum (“candlestick”). The early part of the 18th century saw the introduction of silver candlesticks, aiding piano, desktop reading and room light. Initially hand formed and cast candlesticks and candelabras were produced by silversmiths, beautifully made, lavish and expensive. Mid-18th century loaded silver candlesticks were introduced, this type of fabrication helped to lower the price as less silver was required to create a finished piece. Smaller versions of candlesticks for desks were known as dwarf candlesticks, this assisted lower–level reading. The silver candelabras were often created as pairs, having up to six candle holders each. The large, impressive candlesticks and candelabras created opulence at one’s dining table as well as function.
When we reference cast and solid candlesticks and candelabras it refers to the type and method of production. Cast and solid candlesticks are created by molten silver being poured into moulds to create various components of the design, then silver soldered together to form the finished item. Silver being a heavy element will result in a substantial weighted candlestick or candelabra. When viewing the inside of the candlestick from the base it would appear without any addition non silver weights or fill. This type of candlestick or candelabra has a premium over a loaded or filled item.
The production of the loaded candlestick or candelabra uses a sheet of silver, formed to create the various components and silver soldered together. The big difference being the quantity of silver in this process is significantly less. As such weight needs to be added to create stability to the silver sheet and overall weight of the piece. These items are often made and filled with a pitch or rosin with metal weights added to the molten mixture when poured.
When we list our candlesticks and candelabras, we specify that the item is either:
Cast (Solid Silver) or Loaded (Filled).