Model No: 1142 Saint-Christophe. Created March 1928
Fittingly, 1928 saw the creation of the Gendarmerie Routière (Road Safety Department) in France. Thus, the patron saint of travellers is a logical symbol for a car mascot especially in this year. René LALIQUE takes this opportunity to pay tribute to a personage of the British nobility, Lord Montagu of Beaulieu, who, one fine day in 1896, arrived at the House of Lords at the wheel of his brand new 4-cylinder Daimler, which proudly displayed a bronze statuette of Saint Christopher, the patron saint of travellers. This did not fail to impress the spectators present. That day had seen the birth of the vogue for the radiator mascot, both as a talisman and symbol of class.
Outwardly at first seen as a simple design, there is much more to uncover in Lalique’s interpretation. The aging Saint Christopher is in contrast to the confident young baby Christ raising his hand as he rides on the shoulders of the saint. But most notable are the art deco halo of rays emanating from Christ’s head. Even more so when the mascot was lit and the lines catch the light to great effect.
Clear (white) glass press molded
Price (1932 Lalique et Cie Catalogue): 285FF
Breves of Knightsbridge, London UK titled this model ’Saint Christopher (Patron Saint of Travellers)’ describing it as an engraved design and listed a price of £3/3/0 ‘unilluminated' or £3/4/0 ‘for light’ using the patented Breves illuminated mount. A bulb was 3/s and Duty was 10/6.
Nil Melior, a prominent auto accessories company whose showrooms were located at the Waldorf-Astoria in New York, listed this mascot as "St. Christopher" for $25 including a chromium plated base with an illuminated base available on request. In a different catalogue it was listed as "St. Christophe" at $35 with illuminated base $10 additional.
Other names for this mascot - Saint-Christophe, Saint Christophe, St. Christophe, St-Christophe, Saint Christopher, St Christopher. Mascotte, Hood Ornament, Car Mascot, Bouchon de Radiateur, Radiator Cap.
Appeared in 1928 and 1932 Lalique Catalogue. Removed from 1937 Catalogue (though continued as a paperweight).
Reissued in crystal in 1951 in clear crystal, retaining the molded R. Lalique France signature. No longer marketed today.