The Grecian-scrolled sofas are enriched with palm-flowered tablets and with palm and acanthus foliage wrapping their scrolled arms, while their feet are reeded in the Egyptian fashion popularised by Thomas Hope's Household Furniture and Interior Decoration, 1807. They were commissioned, en suite with a pair of bergere chairs for Glynllifon by Thomas John Wynn, 2nd Baron Newborough (d. 1832), and designed by Gillow to accompany a pillar-end sofa table and matching writing-table that the firm invoiced in March 1824. One of the bergeres (sold Sotheby's Welsh Sale, 16 October 1999, lot 693) bears the 'HH' brand of Gillow's journeyman, and this stamp has also been recorded on a suite of Gillow's giltwood seat furniture supplied for Wentworth Woodhouse, Yorkshire (sold in these Rooms, 8 July 1998, lot 80). The bergere, with this form of back, was named a 'Rutland' chair by Gillow and Co. after a pair supplied in 1820/21 for John Henry Manners, 5th Duke of Rutland (d. 1857) and Elizabeth, Duchess of Rutland at Belvoir Castle. Together with twelve cane-seated rosewood chairs, the pair were invoiced in December 1823 as: 'To 2 carved Rosewood Rutland chairs, stuffed with best hair in canvas @ 10 gns each ... £21.0.0.' A further charge of £10.4.0. was invoiced for upholstering them with 'Taberay' cases.
This pair of Drawing Room sofas, originally upholstered in chintz, were supplied by Gillows and invoiced in June 1823 as :- '2 handsome Rosewood Sofas, stuffed with best hair in fine canvas & 4 feather pillows to each at £20.10. 0 each £41.0.0.'. The making of their chintz cases including gimp and 8 tassels was invoiced at £16.16.4.
The sofas for the Large Drawing Room [en suite with the bergeres, lot 101], were upholstered with loose 'Taberay' cases and invoiced by Gillow & Co. as:
'2 elegant Rosewood Sofas, the frames richly carved, scrole ends, stuffed with best hair in fine canvas and 5 feather pillows ... @ 55.0.0. each ... £110.0.0.'. The making of the Taberay cases was invoiced at a further £48.15.11., while their 'brown holland covers' cost £9.4.0.