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Household Furniture and Interior Decoration   Thomas Hope   1807.05.01

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The central object in this room is a fine marble group, executed by Mr. Flaxman, and representing Aurora visiting Cephalus on mount Ida. The whole surrounding decoration has been rendered, in some degree, analogous to these personages, and to the face of nature at the moment when the first of the two, the goddess of the morn, is supposed to announce approaching day. Round the bottom of the room still reign the emblems of night. In the rail of a black marble table are introduced medallions of the god of sleep and of the goddess of night. The bird consecrated to the latter deity perches on the pillars of a black marble chimneypiece, whose broad frieze is studded with glod stars. The sides of the room display, in satin curtains, draped in ample folds over pannels of looking-glass, and edged with black velvet, the fiery hue which fringes the clouds just before sunrise; and in a ceiling of cooler sky blue are sown, amidst a few still unextinguished luminaries of the night, the roses which the harbinger of day, in her course, spreads on every side around her.
The pedestal of the group offers the torches, the garlands, the wreaths, and the other insignia belonging to the mistresses of Caphalus, disposed around the fatal dart of which she made her lover a present. The broad band which girds the top of the room, contains medallions of the ruddy goddess and of the Phrygian youth, intermixed with the instruments and the emblems of the chace, his favorite amusement. Figures of the youthful hours, adorned with wreahs of foliage, adorn part of the furniture, which is chiefly gilt, in order to give more relief to the azure, the black, and the orange compartments of the hangings.



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