The Most Iconic Chandeliers in the World
The first chandeliers were used in the medieval period and consisted of several candleholders joined together with wood and were reserved for areas where the wealthier legions of society entertained.
Since then chandeliers have evolved through technology, fashion, and taste into the glass, gold, silver, and crystal designs that we admire now.
Today these ornate light fixtures are still used in rooms to provide an air of opulence where people are intended to walk in and instantly feel impressed. Within the home they work especially well as stairwell lights where the long drops and space available can really showcase a beutiful chandelier.
At Sherwood Lighting we have a huge range of modern and traditional lights for you to explore including chandeliers, pendant lights, spotlights, outdoor lights, and others.
Throughout the world chandeliers are found in any room that exudes glamour. Here we have put together examples of some of the most famous chandeliers in the world, how many are you familiar with?
These emotive pictures of chandeliers epitomise the Titanic: they are a symbol of magnificent luxury diminished to a depleted piece of rusted metal at the bottom of the Atlantic. Even now, one can easily imagine that these lights once hung in huge lavish rooms. Famously dubbed “unsinkable”, the Titanic’s demise was responsible for the deaths of over 1500 people. The ship carried some of the wealthiest people in the world as well as hundreds of individuals hoping to build a new life in America. The devastating collision with an iceberg, the forgetting of binoculars, and the lack of lifeboats have been firmly chronicled in history. Titanic’s Captain, Edward Smith, famously went down with his ship as did the iconic chandelier.
The Phantom of the Opera
Andrew Lloyd Webber’s The Phantom of the Opera premiered in 1986 and has since gone on to gross an estimated £3.2 billion worldwide. The play’s most famous and hotly anticipated scene features a chandelier dramatically crashing to the ground. Although people interpret the falling of the chandelier differently, a common view is that it represents the fragile, superficial glamour of the theatre which hides the ugly cruelty beneath it.
Palace of Versailles: The Hall of Mirrors
The Palace of Versailles is steeped in French history. It was France’s Royal residence for a century before the Revolution - the palace of The Sun King, Louis XIV. Louis XIV is remembered for his love of beautiful women and stunning décor. He spared no expense when creating his fantasy palace of Versailles which is most evident in the breath-taking chandeliers. Its grandeur has survived a revolution and the Hall of Mirrors (above) was the setting for the momentous signing of the Treaty of Versailles following the end of World War I. This magical room is visited by 3 million tourists per year.
Most Famous Chandelier - Only Fools & Horses
On a more light-hearted note, this famous sketch from Only Fools & Horses is one of the programs most memorable. Del Boy and Rodney have decided to move into the chandelier-cleaning business but unfortunately things don’t go to plan when Granddad loosens the bolt of the wrong chandelier, causing it to spectacularly crash to the floor!
The Dolmabahce Palace, Istanbul
The Dolmabahce Palace is in the Besiktas district, Istanbul. It was the administrative centre of the Ottoman Empire between 1856 and 1922. The palace contains the largest collection of Bohemian crystal chandeliers in the world; Bohemian crystal is especially valuable because of the high quality craftsmanship that goes into it.
The chandelier displayed above is the world’s biggest Bohemian crystal chandelier. A gift from Queen Victoria, it contains 750 lamps and has a total weight of 4.5 tonnes. Victoria chose a chandelier knowing that such a spectacular vision would be admired for centuries.
Sedlec Ossuary, Czech Republic
The Creepiest Chandelier Award would have to go to the Sedlec Ossuary Roman Catholic chapel, Czech Republic. The chapel contains the bones of 40,000-70,000 people.
Most eerily of all is the chandelier of human bones which consists of at least one of each bone in the human body. This macabre centerpiece is surrounded by other decorative bones all round the church, hence its nickname: the Church of Bones.
In the mid-13th Century soil was brought back to the church from the hill where Jesus was crucified. A rumour spread that bodies buried in this soil would decompose within 3 days. During the plague 30,000 people were buried here and since then the chapel attracts 200,000 tourists annually.
Beauty & the Beast
Here is Belle and the Beast in what is one of everybody’s favourite Disney films. After a bumpy start, the Beast shows Belle that he can be the perfect gentleman that she deserves by ballroom dancing under a fabulous chandelier – a truly magical fairytale moment.
St Petersburg's St Peter and Paul Cathedral
This spectacular, colourful chandelier can be found in the St Peter and Paul Cathedral in St Petersburg, Russia. The remains of almost all of the Russian Emperors are buried here including Peter the Great. Nicholas II and his family were also buried here in 1998. The Tsar and his family were brutally murdered during the Russian Revolution. For a long time there were hopes that the youngest, Anastasia, had escaped – unfortunately this was disproved when her body was found and she was finally buried with her family in 1998.