These chairs, with 'roman' trussed and taper-hermed feet, relate to bedroom chairs supplied about 1720 for Erddig, North Wales, and attributed to John Belchier of St. Pauls Churchyard (d. 1753)(see P. Macquoid and R. Edwards, The Dictionary of English Furniture, London, rev. ed, 1954, vol. I, p. 261, fig. 106). Their fashionable 'Vitruvian' legs also feature on contemporary chairs introduced at Blenheim, Oxfordshire, when Sarah, Duchess of Marlborough adopted as her 'Oracle' in taste, the court cabinet-maker James Moore (d. 1726), of St. Giles-in-the-Fields.
These chair-legs introduce triumphal-arched frames for medallioned escutcheons, which are conceived as Cupid's targets, appropriate for a bedroom apartment. Here Love's targets celebrate the triumph of the Bowes family and are filigree-inlaid in the Louis Quatorze 'Roman' manner, with golden ribbon cartouches of palm-flowered Roman acanthus enclosing the ancient Norman 'Bowes' arms: 'ermine three bows stringed palewise proper', for Sir William and Lady Bowes (née Blaikeston). The chairs, which were originally upholstered in richly flowered needlework, formed part of their aggrandisement of Streatlam Castle, Co. Durham, which was carried out with the assistance of the architect Thomas Shirley at the beginning of George I's reign. Their state bedroom was also furnished with a clothes-chest cabinet that was flowered in the Dutch manner, and combined the Bowes and Blaikeston armorials in celebration of their marriage in 1691. The latter, now in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, is discussed in C. Wilk, Western Furniture in the Victoria and Albert Museum, London, 1995, pp. 80-81 (see Macquoid, op. cit., vol. I, p. 170, fig. 16). The Bowes' inlaid furniture also included a card-table bearing the Bowes crest (Macquoid, op. cit., vol. III, p. 242, fig. 4). It is possible that all this inlaid furniture was also supplied by Belchier, who may have been of Huguenot origin and specialisted in all sorts of 'Cabinet Works' and 'Chairs'.