This cast-iron two-seater bench by Schinkel is symbolic of the technological advances of 1800s Prussia, namely through the increased use of iron in both furniture and decorative arts during the reign of Friedrich Wilhelm III (r. 1797-1840) of Prussia.
Karl Friedrich Schinkel (1781-1841), German architect, painter, and a member of Germany's cultural golden age intelligentsia, was arguably the most important architect and designer of German classicism. Cast-iron furniture designed by Schinkel was praised for its functionality and exoticism, and his designs were rapidly adapted in Britain and America. This bench's splat design, with its motif of lyre surrounded by scrolls and winged putti, was one of Schinkel's favoured designs for seat furniture in the 1830s (see Georg Himmelheber, Cast-iron Furniture and all other forms of iron furniture, Munich, 1996, pl. 68).