These handsome fireside bergeres, designed in the French antique manner, formed part of the furnishing of the Library at Mere Hall, Cheshire that was fitted up in 1815 for Thomas Langford-Brooke (d. 1815) by Gillows of London and Lancaster (Gillow archives, Westminster Library, pp. 1983 and 1984). Appropriate for the classical-style library, designed by Lewis Wyatt (d. 1853), their backs are Grecian-scrolled in lyre-form alluding to a chair pattern issued in Thomas Sheraton’s , Cabinet Encyclopaedia, 1807 (pl. 10) and entitled 'Apollo' after the poetry deity.
Related lyre-back chairs, also with book-rests fitted to the arms, were invoiced in 1811 by Gillows for the library designed by the architect William Atkinson (d. 1839) for Broughton Hall, Yorkshire. The latter accompanied a pair of 'elegant mahogany Grecian couches' and were described as '2 mahogany Uxbridge chairs with cane backs, seats, and wings, red morocco cushions for back and seats, each 12 gns [£1.1.0]'. (C. Hussey, English Country Houses: Late Georgian, Glasgow, 1958, p. 95, fig. 166). Their title derived from chairs supplied by the firm in 1807 to Henry Bayly, 1st Earl of Uxbridge.
A similar pair of mahogany caned library armchairs was sold by the late Colonel Sutton Nelthorpe, Scawby Hall, Sotheby's Olympia, 11 April 2002, lot 96 (£47,000).