Joseph Feurstein, maître in 1767.
The stencilled inscription '366 C.H.T. 366' is most probably an inventory mark for William Lowther, 2nd Earl of Lonsdale, whose father, the 1st Earl of Lonsdale, acquired 14-15 Carlton House Terrace in 1837. Furniture from this residence was stencilled 'C.H.T.', generally with a three digit inventory number, in this case twice. Property from 14-15 Carlton House Terrace was later absorbed into Lowther Castle, near Penrith, Cumberland. The contents of Lowther Castle were sold by the 5th Earl of Lonsdale in 1947, when this bonheur-du-jour was described as '20 - BONHEUR DE JOUR of various inlaid woods decorated with utensils and floral motifs and further enriched with chased ormolu mounts, fitted drawer with leather-lined slide and the raised back with cupboards...'. The sale also included the celebrated George III commode by Pierre Langlois, sold by French and Company, Christie's, New York, 24 November 1998, lot 35, which was also acquired by the dealer de Haan.
The collection of French furniture at Carlton House Terrace was probably made by both the 1st and 2nd Earls, and probably included items from their previous London residence as well. The 1st Earl was a noted francophile and intimate of George, Prince of Wales, and like the future King George IV, extensively patronised the celebrated purveyor of French works of art Edward Holmes Baldock, who may possibly have acquired this bonheur-du-jour on the Earl's behalf at one of the many spectacular sales of the period. Whilst the 1st Earl initiated the move into Carlton House Terrace, his son joined the two houses together, decorating them in the French manner and evidently making further important purchases of French furniture and works of art.
When this splendid bonheur-du-jour was sold in 1999, it was stamped 'FEURSTEIN' (now effaced), which was employed by the ébéniste Joseph Feurstein, who hailed from Tyrol. Maître in 1767, he is known to have made beautifully-crafted marquetry furniture in a late Louis XV or Transitional style. 'Naif' marquetry, inspired by the decoration on Chinese porcelain and Coromandel screens appears rarely in his oeuvre, and he may have purchased the marquetry panels from Charles Topino, who developed a business in selling this type of marquety to his confrères.