Rare Pair of George II Yew, Elm and Ash Gothic Windsor Armchairs
Rare Pair of George II Yew, Elm and Ash Gothic Windsor Armchairs
Rare Pair of George II Yew, Elm and Ash Gothic Windsor Armchairs
Rare Pair of George II Yew, Elm and Ash Gothic Windsor Armchairs
Rare Pair of George II Yew, Elm and Ash Gothic Windsor Armchairs
Rare Pair of George II Yew, Elm and Ash Gothic Windsor Armchairs
Rare Pair of George II Yew, Elm and Ash Gothic Windsor Armchairs

Rare Pair of George II Yew, Elm and Ash Gothic Windsor Armchairs

c. 1750 England - Thames Valley

Offered by Thomas Coulborn & Sons

Sold
Request Information Call Dealer
Favourite Item
A pair of Gothic Windsor armchairs, both with a characteristic top bow made in two parts which join together to form a pointed arch back with a scribed edge line. With an elaborate Gothic tracery fretted central splat and narrower upper and lower fretted splats to either side. The arm bow raised on short fretted splats and crook-shaped front supports, the figured elm bell-shaped seat with pronounced return corners and scribed edge line. Both raised on two well-formed cabriole front legs, with pierced front knee brackets and pad feet. The straight-turned ash back legs have an unusual ball applied to the rear foot, the purpose of which is unknown. The legs are joined by a crinoline stretcher.

Windsor Chairs: The term ‘Windsor Chair’ is used to describe wooden chairs whose axis of construction is the seat; with the legs jointed up into the underside of the seat board and the superstructure of the chair jointed into the top of the seat board. The most likely reason that they were named ‘Windsor Chairs’ is that they were being made in the Thames Valley area, and that Windsor was the distribution centre from where they were transported to London and further afield.

In his book ‘The English Regional Chair’ (Antique Collectors’ Club Ltd, 1990), Bernard D. Cotton describes Gothic form chairs as ‘the peak of Windsor design’. Ivan G. Sparkes states that the Gothic Windsor Chair is the ‘most unusual of the eighteenth-century chairs’ and that it had a number of names including ‘the Strawberry Hill, Gothic or church-window splat Windsor’. He goes on to explain that ‘[t]he Gothic Windsor had quite a short life (c 1755 – 70)’ (Ivan G. Sparkes, ‘English Windsor Chair‘, Shire Publications Ltd, 2000, p.5), being first seen in around 1754, when William Partridge of Banbury advertised a gothic (pointed arch) chair. This ‘Gothick’ style of Windsor Chair is one of the most popular and sought after by collectors. Such chairs are now very rare. The Gothic revival in architecture and furniture was famously reflected in and popularised by Horace Walpole (1717–1797), who purchased Strawberry Hill House in London and remodelled it into a cottage with Gothic tracery windows, which has become synonymous with this style of seating.

A similar Gothic Windsor Chair is illustrated on the cover of Michael Harding-Hill’s book ‘Windsor Chairs: An Illustrated Celebration’ (Antique Collectors’ Club, Woodbridge, Suffolk, 2003). Harding-Hill states that the Gothic chair: ‘is the most sophisticated and elegant of all Windsor chairs and today is the most sought after design’ (p.23).

Another similar Gothic Windsor chair, which is made from yew and elm and is one of a set of six chairs, dated circa 1770-1820, is illustrated in ‘100 British Chairs’ (Adam Bowett (ed.), (Antique Collectors’ Club, 2015)), on page 72, fig.49.

A similar pair of George III Yew and Elm Gothic Windsor chairs, dated circa 1760, were sold at a Sotheby’s sale in New York on 7th April 2004 entitled: ‘A Celebration of the English Country House’.
Bibliography:
Ivan G. Sparkes, ‘English Windsor Chair’ (Shire Publications Ltd, 2000).
Bernard D. Cotton, ‘The English Regional Chair’ (Antique Collectors’ Club Ltd, 1990).
Michael Harding-Hill, ‘Windsor Chairs: An Illustrated Celebration‘ (Antique Collectors’ Club, Woodbridge, Suffolk, 2003).
Adam Bowett (ed.), ‘100 British Chairs’ (Antique Collectors’ Club, 2015).
Dimensions
Height 106.00 cm (41.73 inches)
Width 46.50 cm (18.31 inches)
Depth 48.25 cm (19.00 inches)
Stock Code
6335
Medium
Yew, Elm and Ash.
Signed/Inscribed
One of the chairs has a branded inventory mark – ‘G K’ – which is stamped to the rear edge of the seat and again to the underside.
Thomas Coulborn & Sons

Thomas Coulborn & Sons
Vesey Manor
64 Birmingham Road
Sutton Coldfield
West Midlands
B72 1QP
England

+44 (0)121-354 3974
+44 (0)7941 252299
Favourite Dealer
Request Dealer Alerts
Opening Hours
Contacts
View Dealer Location
Member Since 2006
Members of
View Full Details