A rare Queen Anne walnut wing armchair re-upholstered in an historically-accurate silk damask

September 18, 2019 2:38 pm Published by

The back with an arched crest and flanked by ogival wings, and conical out-scrolled arms centering a bell-shaped loose-cushioned seat. The original frame re-upholstered by Albert Chapman in Abberton crimson silk damask. Standing on straight back legs and bifurcated front legs with pad feet. Excellent original colour and patination. English, circa 1710. 3095614

It is extremely rare to find an early, Queen Anne wing armchair in original condition. This chair has an exceptionally fine conformation with elegant, sweeping wings and is, more importantly, very comfortable. The bifurcated front legs are a rare feature, generally only found on the finest pieces from this period, and their natural colour and patination is outstanding.

Even after the Restoration the chair retained its function as the seat of honour. When a great personage was present he would occupy it, with lesser folk sitting on stools, illustrating differences in station. Upholstered chairs with low backs, turned framework and arms padded on their upper surfaces became fashionable after the Restoration. Large, winged armchairs padded and upholstered throughout began to be made during the middle of Charles II’s reign, and examples can be seen at Knowle, Ham House and Penshurst Place.

During the Queen Anne period, wing armchairs tend towards uniformity of design, the wings being prolonged in padded arm-rests with an outward scroll. The new styles became naturalised, and traces of foreign influence are less noticeable . The curved line dominates the design while sound construction, elegance and utility are united in the best chairs of this time. The height of the chair-back was considerably reduced, and in the pattern of the legs they follow the veneered walnut chairs of this time, but the cabriole is often found in a rudimentary form.

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This post was written by joecollinson