A pair of antique brass andirons.

Andirons, also known as fire-dogs, are devices once commonly used to help with burning wood on an open hearth. An andiron consists of a horizontal bar raised on short supports with an upright standard at one end. A pair were used, one standing at each side of the hearth, and the logs of wood rested across the horizontal bars, thus providing a space underneath for a draft to burn the word properly and prevent too much smoking.


The upright portions of andirons took various forms; the design was often architectural, sometimes ornamented with arabesques in silver or copper and occasionally bearing the monograms of their owners. Those meant for use in the kitchen had catches for holding the roasting apparatus.