• English Furniture and Clocks auction at Christies

    Sale 7769

    English Furniture and Clocks

    19 November 2009, London, King Street

  • Lot 37

    A GEORGE III MAHOGANY SERPENTINE COMMODE

    CIRCA 1760

    Price Realised  

    A GEORGE III MAHOGANY SERPENTINE COMMODE
    CIRCA 1760
    The rectangular top with replaced moulded edge above two short and two long drawers, above a shaped foliage-carved apron centred by a shell, on channelled cabriole legs with scrolled feet, the handles replaced, with replaced applied mouldings to the ends, with indistinct chalk inscription on the reverse
    32½ in. (82.5 cm.) high; 50¾ in. (129 cm.) wide; 25 in. (63.5 cm.) deep


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    The serpentined chest-of-drawers is designed in the elegant mid-18th Century 'Picturesque' manner that evolved in part from an engraving of a Louis Quatorze sarcophagus 'commode' chest after a design by Jean Bérain (d. 1711). The ribbon-scrolled stand, with wave-voluted feet, is further enriched with flowers, reeds and Roman acanthus, while its lambrequin cartouche displays an antique-fretted shell recalling the Roman nature deity Venus. Amongst the related stands for commodes and chests-of-drawers displaying this shell badge or a shell-scalloped cartouche is one formerly in the collection of Henry Hirsch, Esq., sold in these Rooms, 10-11 July 1931, lot 83 (£546 to M. Harris). Their aprons relate to the seat frames of a suite of seat furniture supplied by William Vile and John Cobb to the Hon. John Damer of Came House, Dorset, between 1756-62 (A. Oswald, 'Came House, Dorset - II', Country Life, 27 February 1953, p. 574, figs. 7 & 8).

    A commode of related form was sold from the Collection of Samuel Messer, Esq., in these Rooms, 5 December 1991, lot 106 (£88,000) and a similar commode was offered by Michael Lipitch, Sotheby's London, 22 May 1998, lot 342.

    Special Notice

    No VAT will be charged on the hammer price, but VAT at 15% will be added to the buyer's premium which is invoiced on a VAT inclusive basis.


    Provenance

    Anonymous sale, Christie's, London, 12 December 1963, lot 272 (with later gadrooned edge and lacking applied mouldings at each end).
    Anonymous sale, Christie's, London, 14 June 2001, lot 122.


    Pre-Lot Text

    THE PROPERTY OF A LADY