GERMANY – FIGURINE / BUST – KAISER WILHELM I
This is a fine bronze bust of Kaiser Wilhelm I (1797-1888).
The likeness of the Kaiser is remarkable including his distinctive mutton chops and mustache. He has a wide ribbon bar and both a Black Eagle Order and a Pour le Mérite at his neck. At the reverse we see the name of the artist Gladenbeck.
Carl Gustav Hermann Gladenbeck (1821-1918) was famous for a foundry of his name which produced many of the famous bronzes and statues of Imperial Germany. His work and participation included the “Goldelse” which was mounted on the Victory column in Berlin. He was also involved in the creation of the “Amazone” which is today seen in the Altes Museum in Berlin.
The Gladenbeck foundry produced the finest work in Germany and a bronze like this is a real treasure. Looking at the shoulder board on Wilhelm’s tunic he is not of Generalfeldmarschall rank. I would date this work to the period of 1859-1865. During some of this time he was the Prinz Regent while his elder brother was incapsitated (SP), Upon the death of King Friedrich Wilhelm IV (1795-1861) he assumed the throne as King in 1861.
This is a magnificent bronze which should date more than one hundred fifty years ago. It is in excellent condition.