The chairback's floral embellished strapwork is inspired from French designs popularized at the beginning of the 18th century by Daniel Marot's Oeuvres, 1712.
The chair design derives from an early eighteenth century set belonging to the Borghese family and apparently listed in the nineteenth century inventories at the Palazzo Borghese, Rome until the collection was sold in 1892. Traditionally thought to be English in origin, it has been put forth that the Borghese set might have been commissioned for the 16th Earl of Shrewsbury for Ingestre Hall in Staffordshire whose daughter married Marc Antonio Borghese, thus explaining the presence of an English set of chairs in Rome. While is it tempting to subscribe to this theory, it is equally plausible that these chairs were made for direct export to Italy. Certainly, the furniture export trade from England to Continental Europe was a prolific one that can be substantiated by records of the Clerkenwell maker Giles Grendey (d.1780) whose lavish trade with Spain and Portugal is well known (see C. Gilbert, 'Furniture by Giles Grendey for the Spanish Trade', The Magazine Antiques, April 1971, pp. 544-550).
Another chair of closely related form displaying an open shell-carved cresting and knees is illustrated in H. Cescinsky, English Furniture of the Eighteenth Century, vol.I, New York, n.d., p.82, fig.107.