A SET OF SIX GEORGE II WALNUT SIDE CHAIRS, CIRCA 1730
the drop-in seats covered in associated embossed leather
In 'country house' condition with several historic repairs. The underlying frames of beech and walnut with evidence of worm no longer active. Some chairs with corresponding repaired breaks as a result of worm damage notably to upright of backrest. The surface of each has been re-polished sometime ago and probably in the 19th century. Losses to veneers and later patch replacements throughout. Some movement to joints but chairs are sound and sturdy. Later leather upholstery adapted from 'Spanish' leather screens with signs of wear but otherwise in good order. Generally with minor marks consistent with age.
"In response to your inquiry, we are pleased to provide you with a general report of the condition of the property described above. Since we are not professional conservators or restorers, we urge you to consult with a restorer or conservator of your choice who will be better able to provide a detailed, professional report. Prospective buyers should inspect each lot to satisfy themselves as to condition and must understand that any statement made by Sotheby's is merely a subjective, qualified opinion. Prospective buyers should also refer to any Important Notices regarding this sale, which are printed in the Sale Catalogue.
NOTWITHSTANDING THIS REPORT OR ANY DISCUSSIONS CONCERNING A LOT, ALL LOTS ARE OFFERED AND SOLD AS IS" IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE CONDITIONS OF BUSINESS PRINTED IN THE SALE CATALOGUE."
Inventory, 1949, '[probably] A pair of Queen Anne walnut spoon back chairs with solid shaped splats, trap seats in painted leather, on cabriole legs, carved with a shell on the knees and pad feet' on the Staircase Gallery
This rare set of carved walnut side chairs, with shaped 'banister' back splats and rounded 'compass' seats, are typical of English chair design of the 1730s. The scallop shell carved cabriole legs - a reference to the Roman goddess Venus - soon became a ubiquitous motif of neo-Palladian iconography. Adam Bowett suggests the shell would have been a natural progression for carvers and joiners who, in the 1720s, had been employing leafy scrolls or feathered plumes to the heads of chair legs. For related examples, see those illustrated Adam Bowett, Early Georgian Furniture 1715-1740, China, 2009, pp. 160-181.