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Indispensable in the decorative arts, mirrors employed the decorative vocabulary of the various styles and periods in order to integrate into interiors. Placed above a fireplace or in the wall space between two windows, the overmantel or pier glass is a mirror whose mercury-coated glass is surmounted by a canvas or cartouche with richly carved motifs. Although its location has changed over time, it is still called an overmantel or pier glass.
The progress made in the manufacture of mirrors has made it possible to significantly reduce faults and the cost, while improving their reflective quality. Ever larger and decorative, mirrors, overmantels, and pier glasses were designed to be the perfect complement to the many types of woodwork in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. Swing mirrors, overmantels and pier glasses, dressing mirrors, wall, mobile, and table mirrors … mirrors combine—with great finesse—functionality with their appeal as highly decorative objects.