This is the surround for a memorial relief commemorating Francis Musters, who died at the age of 15. His father, Sir John Musters (d.1689), who almost certainly commissioned the monument, may well have known the renowned sculptor Cibber at Charles II’s court, since the sculptor was ‘carver to the kings closet’, and Sir John himself had a number of court connections.
Cibber was one ofthe leading sculptors active in Britain in the late 17th century. A native of Denmark, he studied in Italy before arriving in England in about 1660. Details of this sculpture, such as the finely carved lace cravat and the buoyant putti, are signs of the sculptor’s Continental training. The memorial was formerly in the parish church of St Mary, Hornsey, Middlesex, which was demolished and replaced by a modern church in 1969. The sculpted figurative relief is set within an elaborate framework.