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    Sale 1993

    Important English Furniture

    25 April 2008, New York, Rockefeller Plaza

  • Lot 64


    CIRCA 1770

    Price Realised  


    CIRCA 1770
    Each with a serpentine toprail with gadrooned edging, with a brown silk velvet seatback, armrests, and seat, with a serpentine seatrail, on flower-headed cabriole legs with scrolled feet, regilt (2)

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    The serpentined and gadrooned frames in the French manner relate to the 'cabriole' chair in Thomas Malton's Complete Treatise on Perspective, London, 1775, pl. XXXIII, fig. 131. A model of a similar form executed in mahogany and with cartouche-form backs have traditionally been associated with the work of John Cobb (d.1778) of St. Martin's Lane, 'upholsterer' to George III from 1761 in partnership with William Vile (d.1767). Related furniture was supplied at this period for Erddig, Denbighshire (J. Cragg, 'Room for improvement, the re-arrangement of room furnishings at Erddig', Apollo, April 2002, p. 38, fig. 4). Payments to John Cobb were made by Philip Yorke I of Erddig in 1770 (Erddig, Guide Book, 1978, p. 30). See lot 37 in this sale for a pair of chairs from this group and other references.

    Another giltwood chair of this model and apparently from the same suite was sold, The Property of a Lady of Title, Christie's, London, 17 April 1997, lot 39.


    These chairs once formed part of the collection of Kathryn (Kitty) Bache (1896-1983). Kathryn was the daughter of the Wall Street financier Jules Bache. Her father, aside from being tremendously successful in the business world (he controlled the stock brokerage house J. S. Bache & Co.), was also a celebrated art collector and philanthopist. In 1937, he opened his magnificent art collection to the public, and in 1943 gifted some of his works to the Detroit Institute of Arts. In 1944, he gave the remainder of his collection to the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York.

    In 1927, Kitty Bache became the third wife of Gilbert Miller (d. 1969), the Tony Award-winning American theatrical producer and son of English-born theatrical producer Henry Miller (d. 1926). Columbia University's Kathryn Bache Miller Theatre is named in her honor.


    The Estate of Kathryn Bache Miller, Mill Neck, New York and 550 Park Avenue, New York; Christie's, New York, 17-19 April 1980, lot 1013 (not gilded).
    with Wellington Antiques, New York.
    Bought from Hotspur, London.

    Pre-Lot Text

    Property from the Estate of Leona M. Helmsley