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    Sale 7727

    Important English Furniture and Clocks

    4 June 2009, London, King Street

  • Lot 107

    A PAIR OF GEORGE III GILTWOOD ARMCHAIRS

    CIRCA 1775, IN THE MANNER OF THOMAS CHIPPENDALE

    Price Realised  

    Estimate

    A PAIR OF GEORGE III GILTWOOD ARMCHAIRS
    CIRCA 1775, IN THE MANNER OF THOMAS CHIPPENDALE
    Each with pearled frame with arched back and bowed seat covered in associated French 18th century floral tapestry, with curved arms and downswept supports with palmette terminals, on reeded tapering legs and leaf-carved feet, regilt
    37 in. (94 cm.) high; 24 in. (61 cm.) wide; 23 in. (58.5 cm.) deep (2)


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    Amongst the houses being furnished by Chippendale between 1776 and 1778 was that of Sir Richard Worsley, Bt. (d. 1805) at Appuldurcombe on the Isle of Wight. There is a possibility that this pair may have formed part of the suite supplied for the Drawing Room, which was hung with '8 pieces of Gobelin Tapestry, representing the Arts & Sciences, copied from Bouchier's [sic] paintings at Versailles'. They were inventoried about 1779 as: '8 Cabriole elbow chairs carv'd & gilt in burnish'd gold, & cover'd with Gobelin Tapestry. A Sofa to Match, cover'd wt. do.' (see L. Boynton, 'Sir Richard Worsley's Furniture at Appuldurcombe Park', Furniture History, 1965, pp. 39-58). The presence of fine tapestry used to cover these chairs suggests that they may indeed be the Appuldurcombe 'Gobelins' chairs. A stronger link is provided by the composition of Chippendale's accompanying Library chairs; these honoured ancient poets, by the presence of triumphal tripods bearing their laurelled medallions in arched pediments capped by palm-flowered acroteria also found on the present chairs (C. Gilbert, The Life and Work of Thomas Chippendale, 1978, vol. II, fig. 152).
    Appuldurcombe passed in 1805 to Sir Richard Worsley's niece Henrietta Anna Maria Charlotte Bridgeman Simpson (d. 1813). Following the death of her husband, its furnishings were largely dispersed between 1859 and 1863 by Charles Anderson Worsley Anderson-Pelham, 2nd Earl of Yarborough (d. 1862) and Charles Anderson-Pelham, 3rd Earl of Yarborough (d. 1875).

    DESIGN
    These French patterned drawing-room chairs reflect the influence of Parisian 'cabriolet' chairs composed 'dans le goût antique' as promoted by the architect Jean Charles Delafosse's Nouvelle Iconologie Historique, 1768 (2nd ed. 1771). Their flowered and triumphal-arched 'tablet' backs would appear to have been intended to frame figurative medallions worked in tapestry or needlework or in painted silk; while the Grecian scrolled arms terminate in Greek key-fretted volutes and sculpted in bas relief with Grecian palm-flowered acroteria. Their reed-banded frames are also wreathed in 'Venus' pearl-strings in the late 1760s Pompeian Herculaneum or 'Etruscan' style introduced by the Rome-trained court architect Robert Adam (d. 1792). Pearl strings were also introduced by the St. Martin's Lane cabinet-maker Thomas Chippendale (d. 1779) and his son Thomas Chippendale the Younger (d. 1822) for seat-furniture designed for the Adam-decorated salon at Burton Constable, Yorkshire in the late 1770s; and which likewise featured this pattern of columnar and reed-clustered legs terminating in palm-flowered plinths (Gilbert, op. cit., figs. 192-4). The elegance of the present chairs can also be identified in Chippendale the Younger's contemporary pattern-book entitled Sketches of Ornament, 1779 (Gilbert, op. cit., figs. 28-30 and 33).

    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

    Possibly supplied to Sir Richard Worsley, 7th Bt., (1751-1805) Appuldurcombe, Isle of Wight.
    The Maharajah of Baroda.
    Anonymous sale, Christie's, London, 20 June 1968, lot 110 (as a set of eight).


    Pre-Lot Text

    THE PROPERTY OF AN ESTATE