This red-japanned chair relates to six late 1630s 'back-stool' or 'farthingale' chairs that form part of a celebrated suite of furniture displayed in the Leicester Gallery at Knole, Kent, (see P. Macquoid, The Age of Oak, London, 1904, fig. 178; R. W. Symonds, 'The Upholstered Furniture at Knole - I', Burlington Magazine, May 1945, p. 114; G. Beard and J. Coleman, 'The Knole Settee', Apollo, April 1999, pp. 24-28, fig. 6; and C. Rowell, 'A set of early seventeenth-century crimson velvet seat furniture at Knole' Furniture History, 2006, pp. 27-52, figs. 4, 5 and 16).
While the chair's form corresponds to that of the suite and there are similarities in the painted decoration, the pattern of the red and golden foliage, painted to simulate lace, appears to be more closely related to that of Knole's 'Chair of State', which itself apparently corresponds to a throne depicted in Knole's portrait by Mytens of James I. It has been claimed that this Knole 'Chair of State', which bears the Hampton Court inventory mark beside the later stamped date of 1661, was painted to match its original upholstery (see G. Jackson-Stops, 'A Courtier's Collection: The 6th Earl of Dorset's Furniture at Knole - II', Country Life , 9 June 1977, figs. 1 and 2). Another related armchair is in the Victoria & Albert Museum (see P. Thornton, Seventeenth-Century Interior decoration in England, France and Holland, London, 1978, pl. 183).