• Christies auction house James Christie logo

    Sale 7700

    Important English Furniture and Clocks

    22 January 2009, London, King Street

  • Lot 113

    A LATE VICTORIAN ASHFORD SLATE AND DERBYSHIRE MINERALS TABLE TOP

    THE TOP SUPPLIED BY LOMAS OF DERBY, 1887, THE WALNUT BASE OF MID-GEORGIAN STYLE AND POSSIBLY INCORPORATING SOME 18TH CENTURY ELEMENTS

    Price Realised  

    Estimate

    A LATE VICTORIAN ASHFORD SLATE AND DERBYSHIRE MINERALS TABLE TOP
    THE TOP SUPPLIED BY LOMAS OF DERBY, 1887, THE WALNUT BASE OF MID-GEORGIAN STYLE AND POSSIBLY INCORPORATING SOME 18TH CENTURY ELEMENTS
    The rectangular top inlaid with Duke's red marble, bluejohn and other quartzite, in a black Ashford slate frame, the base with a waved frieze, on cabriole legs with incised moulded ears, on pad feet, the ears and cavetto frieze later, several tips to scrolls replaced
    33 in. (84 cm.) high; 43½ in. (110.5 cm.) wide; 27 in. (68.5 cm.) deep


    Contact Client Service
    • info@christies.com

    • New York +1 212 636 2000

    • London +44 (0)20 7839 9060

    • Hong Kong +852 2760 1766

    • Shanghai +86 21 6355 1766

    The Victorian 'Derbyshire' Grecian-black limestone tablet is flowered in Roman mosaic fashion with purple Derbyshire 'blue john' fluorspar, that forms an opened 'Venus' scallop-shell medallion . This is wreathed by more pearl-decked shells that are tied to Roman foliage by golden waved ribbons in spandrel cartouches; while its golden edged border 'Ashford' white marble is diamond-jewelled in fluorspar woven in a trellised ribbon-guilloche of Derbyshire 'ducal' red marble.
    Such Derbyshire manufactures had been greatly promoted by William Spencer Cavendish, 6th Duke of Devonshire (d.1858), and by his son William Cavendish, 7th Duke of Devonshire (d.1891) (see N. Barker, Five Centuries of Collecting at Chatsworth, 2003, no.151). Amongst the leading manufacturers of such tops were S. Birley of Ashford and Thomas Woodruff; while a related table top, manufactured by Tomlinson of Bakewell, was shown at the 1862 London Exhibition (see J. Meyer, Great Exhibitions, 1851-1900, Woodbridge, p. 136).
    The top, which the Rev. Alfred Nathaniel, 4th Baron Scarsdale (d.1916) purchased from R.G. Lomas of Derby in 1887 for Kedleston Hall, Derbyshire, may have been intended to serve as embellishment for a dressing-table in the State Bedroom, where a similar 'blue john' medallion ornamented its 18th century marble chimneypiece. The table's elegant George I truss-scrolled columnar legs terminating in 'round toe' pads, would appear to derive from one of the family's tables, such as the 'walnut folding table' listed in the 1804 inventory. The frame's lambrequin of arched and wave-scrolled frets would appear to have been executed in the 1880s.

    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

    Supplied to Alfred Nathaniel, 4th Baron Scarsdale (1831-1916), Kedleston Hall, Derbyshire, by R. G. Lomas, 37 King Street, Derby, in 1887 for £22.10s.0d and by descent.
    The walnut base made at Kedleston.


    Pre-Lot Text

    THE PROPERTY OF THE HON. JAMES CURZON
    (LOTS 113-115)


    Exhibited

    London, Christie's, Treasures of the North, 13 January-13 February 2000, p. 131, no. 96.