c. 1530 England

Offered by Shaw Edwards Antiques

£5,950 gbp
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Listing Information
This is a good example of a 16th Century English boarded coffer, dated circa 1530. The main box is constructed from elm with an Oak lid and internal till. The front is decorated with two roundels with each of the centre rings ornamented with Celtic crosses which are interspersed with primitive leaf motifs. On close examination the carving is probably later Victorian work. Within the cross arms the decorations are trefoils inside thumb mouldings. The outer rings are also decorated with double denticulated patterns and ornamented with thumb mouldings. In fact the overall decorative design of this box is brought together by these thumb mouldings which again appear both on the outer edge of the lid and down the edges of the front and back elm boards. The top has the remains of an interspersed channel moulding on its front edge together with a small amount of metal stud decoration

The clamped front construction is secured by large hand made bolt headed nails of good oxidised colour. Overall the colour of the timbers is consistent with the age of this box, and this is despite the fact that there is evidence of the box having been subject to quite significant water damage at some time in its life. Interestingly the degree of worm infestation over the years is less than would have expected, and this may be due to the fact that the wood was relatively waterlogged for some time.

Radio carbon dating by the Scottish Universities Research Centre has been carried out on a sample of sapwood removed from the front board, and this has confirmed that the timber was cut down between 1525 and 1595 which is consistent with the 16th century dating. ( A copy of the report is available.)
Restorations: This box has had two restorations over its life, one in Victorian times, and one since it was acquired. The Victorian work that was done provided angled metal strengthening straps to the front and sides, the introduction of the right hand metal strap and hasp, the application of two carrying handles, the insertion of a wooden strip to the top of the back board to compensate for natural shrinkage, two locks and plates to the front, an eighteen inch strip to the leading edge of the lid and a small square “fill-it” in the top. The recent restoration was predominantly conservational with a wooden strip into the lid to compensate for natural shrinkage, a small “fill-it” to the right hand side of the top, two small “fill-its” to the inside edge of the front board, and a repair to the right hand hinge together with replacement hinge pins and some hand made nails in the top.
Height 67.50 cm (26.57 inches)
Width 145.00 cm (57.09 inches)
Depth 58.50 cm (23.03 inches)
Stock Code
Elm, oak
Shaw Edwards Antiques

Shaw Edwards Antiques
Reading, Berkshire.
Also Edenbridge Galleries
1 The Square
Edenbridge, Kent

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