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Anonymous sale, Sotheby's, Olympia, 15 July 2003, lot 228.
A PRIVATE COLLECTION OF WALNUT FURNITURE
REMOVED FROM A QUEEN ANNE LONDON TOWN HOUSE
Lots 60 to 82 form a distinguished part of a private collection that was until recently housed in a Queen Anne property in Church Row, Hampstead. This celebrated street of eighteenth century terraced houses, described by Pevsner in The Buildings of England as the finest street in Hampstead, is considered to be one of London's best-preserved early Georgian streets. Faced with mellow London stock bricks with red dressings, the houses - all of pleasingly varying proportions - were built between 1707 and 1730 as summer retreats for spa visitors and rich London merchants. Church Row has as its focal point the fine wrought iron railings from the Duke of Chandos' famous house Canons and installed at Church Row following that house's sale in 1747. The Georgian facade of the parish church of St John's is another point of interest, where John Constable RA, and John Harrison - progenitor of the marine chronometer - lie buried. The street itself has been home to many well-known artistic and literary figures, including Lord Stow Hill at No.19 and H.G. Wells at No.17.
One of the most complete Church Row houses in terms of architectural detail, Number Eighteen was lived in by Thomas Park FSA 'The Poetical Antiquary' (1759-1834), and by his son John James Park (1795-1833), author of the first History of Hampstead, whose lives are commemorated by a plaque erected by The Hampstead Antiquarian and Historical Society in 1909. Inside, the wide hall and handsome broad staircase lead to several fine panelled rooms. With their tall sash windows, pale oak-planked floors and Queen Anne bolection fireplaces, these interiors provided an atmospheric and appropriate setting for a splendid group of early eighteenth century walnut furniture, including the following twenty-three lots.