This Grecian temple-pedimented bed is likely to have been commissioned by William Henry, 3rd Earl of Darlington (and subsequently lst Marquess and Duke of Cleveland (d. 1842) around the time of the Prince Regent's visit to Raby in 1805. Darlington shared the Prince's taste in many things, creating a Chinese Drawing Room and Gothic Saloon at Raby and patronising several of the Prince's favourite craftsmen, including Messrs. Elward, Marsh and Tatham, as well as the Vulliamys. He is also known to have patronised the Wyatt dynasties' favourite cabinet-makers Messrs. Gillow's for 'fitting out' the bedrooms with identical models supplied for Tatton Park, Belvoir and elsewhere around 1810-12, although further improvements were no doubt carried out following his second marriage in 1813.
With its triumphal palm-flowered tympanum and Egyptian priestess hermed pillars, it is conceived in the contemporary French/antique fashion that had been promoted by C. Percier and P.-F.L. Fontaine's Recueil de Décorations Intèrieures, 1801 and by the Mayfair mansion/museum established by the connoisseur Thomas Hope, author of Household Furniture and Interior Decoration, 1807. A related bed pattern, but with posts conjoined at the sides, was published by George Smith, 'Upholder' to George IV when Prince of Wales, and included in his Collection of Designs for Household Furniture and Interior Decoration, 1808 (pl. 16). Its priestess herms also featured in a 'French sofa' pattern issued as suitable for 'large mansions and castles' in R. Ackermann's, Repository of Arts, in 1812, the year that George succeeded as Prince Regent. While many of Ackermann's contemporary designs were obtained from the Strand firm that had been established in 1801 by Messrs. Morgan and Sanders, the bed's fine sculpted figures could also be the work of a specialist carver such as Hope's protégé Peter Bogaert (d. 1819). The taste was also shared by Thomas Chippendale the Younger (d. 1822), who followed his 1803 visit to Paris by introducing Egyptian priestess herms for tables supplied to Sir Richard Colt Hoare, 2nd Bt., (d. 1838) of Stourhead, Wiltshire (J. Goodison, 'Thomas Chippendale the Younger at Stourhead', Furniture History, 2005, pp. 57-116, fig. 29).
A watercolour design by T. Sheraton for a related canopied 'Egyptian' bed is illustrated in S. Parissien, Regency Style, London, 1992.