Show me:
and
Clear all filters

  • 25 items Explore
  • 35 items
  • 25 items Explore
  • 48 items
  • 89 items
  • 3,454 items Explore
  • 97 items Explore
  • 3 items
  • 4 items
  • 42 items
  • 11,032 items Explore
  • 209 items Explore
  • 1,235 items Explore
  • 8,505 items Explore
  • 5,050 items Explore
  • 72 items Explore
  • 167 items Explore
  • 10,620 items Explore
  • 13,625 items Explore
  • 4,646 items Explore
  • 1 items
  • 5 items
  • 153 items Explore
  • 2,038 items Explore
  • 2 items
  • 4,756 items Explore
  • 24 items Explore
  • 437 items Explore
  • 1 items
  • 19,204 items Explore
  • 34 items Explore
  • 1,902 items Explore
  • 1,113 items Explore
  • 6 items
  • 4,601 items Explore
  • 456 items Explore
  • 29 items
  • 920 items Explore
  • 1 items
  • 1 items Explore
  • 5 items
  • 7 items
  • 19,345 items Explore
  • 791 items Explore
  • 19 items
  • 73 items Explore
  • 33 items
  • 800 items
  • 25 items
  • 61 items
  • 28 items
  • 319 items Explore
  • 6 items
  • 44 items Explore
  • 1 items
  • 2 items
  • 145 items
  • 2 items
  • 7 items
  • 121 items Explore
  • 119 items
  • 1 items
  • 1,021 items Explore
  • 1 items
  • 800 items
  • 95 items
  • 27 items
  • 108 items
  • 27,631 items Explore
  • 1 items
  • 3,837 items Explore
  • 1,529 items Explore
  • 403 items
  • 158 items Explore
  • 9,712 items Explore
  • 9,685 items Explore
  • 4 items
  • 1 items
  • 5 items
  • 39 items
  • 3 items
  • 4 items
  • 5,139 items Explore
  • 7,454 items Explore
  • 4,232 items Explore
  • 1,512 items Explore
  • 930 items Explore
  • 3,493 items Explore
  • 5 items
  • 334 items
  • 1 items
  • 1 items
  • 3,434 items Explore
  • 20 items Explore
  • 354 items Explore
  • 797 items Explore
  • 1,098 items Explore
  • 510 items Explore
  • 1,006 items Explore
  • 1,138 items
  • 89 items
  • 125 items Explore
  • 6,953 items Explore
  • 170 items
  • 310 items
  • 4 items
  • 27 items
  • 61 items
  • 304 items Explore
  • 2 items
  • 2,923 items Explore
  • 1,575 items Explore
  • 82 items
  • 43 items
  • 19,430 items Explore
  • 1,241 items Explore
  • 138 items
  • 1,529 items Explore
  • 32 items
  • 1 items
  • 132 items Explore
  • 24 items
  • 40 items
  • 20 items
  • 252 items
  • 314 items
  • 747 items Explore
  • 1,896 items
  • 349 items Explore
  • 2,426 items
  • 2,525 items
  • 3 items
  • 3 items
  • 5 items
  • 4,390 items Explore
  • 1 items
  • 34,049 items Explore
  • 1 items
  • 3,285 items Explore
  • 274 items Explore
  • 8,059 items Explore
  • 31 items
  • 25 items
  • 729 items Explore
  • 3 items
  • 65 items
  • 161 items
  • 52 items
  • 21,728 items Explore
  • 916 items
  • 18 items
  • 22,121 items Explore
  • 2 items
  • 2,331 items Explore
  • 1 items
  • 1,052 items Explore
  • 59 items
  • 499 items
  • 3,292 items Explore
  • 176 items
  • 453 items Explore
  • 3 items
  • 21 items
  • 90 items Explore
  • 76 items
  • 281 items Explore
  • 1 items
  • 6 items
  • 128 items
  • 295 items
  • 736 items
  • 868 items
  • 1 items
  • 369 items Explore
  • 272 items Explore
  • 11,395 items Explore
  • 760 items Explore
  • 6,037 items Explore
  • 10 items
  • 7,028 items Explore
  • 27 items
  • 5,362 items Explore
  • 4 items
  • 3,732 items Explore
  • 9,201 items Explore
  • 7,747 items Explore
  • 201 items
  • 19 items
  • 142 items
  • 7 items
  • 1,024 items Explore
  • 19 items
  • 4,098 items Explore
  • 4 items
  • 1,096 items Explore
  • 223 items
  • 1 items
  • 3,495 items Explore
  • 20 items
  • 696 items Explore
  • 18 items
  • 134 items
  • 6,070 items Explore
  • 14,235 items Explore
  • 3,130 items Explore
  • 1 items
  • 8 items
  • 9,318 items Explore
  • 37 items
  • 1 items
  • 21,320 items Explore
  • 131 items
  • 38 items
  • 13,166 items Explore
  • 3,387 items Explore
  • 2,300 items Explore
  • 44 items
  • 41,244 items Explore
  • 638 items Explore
  • 415 items
  • 23,284 items Explore
  • 218 items
  • 3 items
  • 1 items
  • 20 items
  • 27 items
  • 256 items Explore
  • 4 items
  • 217 items Explore
  • 2 items
  • 13,207 items Explore
  • 3 items
  • 10,261 items
  • 9 items
  • 10 items
  • 14 items
  • 25 items
  • 1 items
  • 4,542 items Explore
  • 918 items Explore
  • 1 items
  • 15 items
  • 1 items
  • 1 items
  • 220 items
  • 702 items Explore
  • 42 items
  • 2,285 items Explore
  • 1,661 items Explore
  • 15 items
  • 1,928 items Explore
  • 151 items
  • 84 items
  • 772 items Explore
  • 3,272 items Explore
  • 41 items
  • 17 items
  • 12 items
  • 10,646 items Explore
  • 23,074 items Explore
  • 1 items
  • 1,374 items
  • 180 items Explore
  • 8 items
  • 92 items
  • 3 items
  • 13,311 items Explore
  • 3,571 items Explore
  • 2,645 items Explore
  • 4,776 items Explore
  • 22 items
  • 45 items
  • 6,901 items Explore
  • 4,796 items Explore
  • 271 items Explore
  • 2,300 items Explore
  • 2,915 items Explore
  • 3 items
  • 1,865 items Explore
  • 60 items
  • 223 items Explore
  • 448 items Explore
  • 6,122 items Explore
  • 8,816 items Explore
  • 1,848 items Explore
  • 5,808 items Explore
  • 3,344 items Explore
  • 11,068 items Explore
  • 86 items
  • 11 items
  • 1,646 items Explore
  • 7 items
  • 24 items
  • 51 items
  • 5 items
  • 1 items
  • 2,793 items Explore
  • 620 items Explore
  • 62 items
  • 17 items
  • 151 items Explore
  • 1 items
  • 87 items Explore
  • 1 items
  • 464 items
  • 996 items
  • 3,604 items Explore
  • 5 items
  • 9,402 items Explore
  • 48 items Explore
  • 7 items
  • 42 items
  • 3 items
  • 13,708 items Explore
  • 1,163 items Explore
  • 92 items
  • 10,566 items Explore
  • 1,005 items Explore
  • 1,924 items
  • 6,530 items Explore
  • 21 items
  • 12,948 items Explore
  • 1,418 items Explore
  • 6 items
  • 9,584 items Explore
  • 16,257 items Explore
  • 4 items
  • 1,670 items Explore
  • 175 items
  • 58 items
  • 5,684 items Explore
  • 8,787 items Explore
  • 48 items
  • 25 items
  • 2 items
  • 59 items
  • 3 items
  • 7,378 items Explore
  • 401 items Explore
  • 13 items
  • 4 items
  • 6 items
  • 4 items
  • 103 items Explore
  • 7 items
  • 5 items
  • 480 items
  • 181 items Explore
  • 8,379 items Explore
  • 55 items
  • 23,413 items Explore
  • 7,350 items Explore
  • 5 items
  • 26 items
  • 4,215 items Explore
  • 465 items
  • 339 items Explore
  • 12,687 items Explore
  • 55 items
  • 20 items
  • 7 items
  • 4 items
  • 315 items Explore
  • 434 items
  • 184 items
  • 3,704 items Explore
  • 27 items
  • 1,227 items Explore
  • 2,494 items Explore
  • 732 items Explore
  • 36 items
  • 1,148 items Explore
  • 97 items Explore
  • 42 items
  • 217 items Explore
  • 72,206 items Explore
  • 1 items
  • 3,065 items Explore
  • 2,846 items Explore
  • 26 items
  • 3,618 items Explore
  • 1,832 items Explore
  • 4 items
  • 17,259 items Explore
  • 5,508 items Explore
  • 7 items
  • 633 items Explore
  • 85 items
  • 468 items
  • 39 items
  • 76 items
  • 29 items
  • 335 items
  • 3 items
  • 41 items
  • 1,175 items Explore
  • 109 items
  • 805 items
  • 17 items
  • 10,978 items Explore
  • 27 items
  • 13 items
  • 1,566 items Explore
  • 1 items
  • 214 items
  • 16,816 items Explore
  • 85 items
  • 17 items
  • 1 items
  • 9 items
  • 6 items
  • 324 items
  • 2 items
  • 628 items Explore
  • 1,587 items Explore
  • 8 items
  • 1,034 items Explore
  • 2 items
  • 261 items

Select a time period

Or choose a specific year

Clear all filters

Open armchair

attributed to Thomas Roberts

Category

Furniture

Date

circa 1697 - 1702

Materials

Carved walnut, original velvet and metal-thread upholstery

Measurements

137 x 96 cm

Place of origin

'The Royal Chair', Marylebone Street, Westminster, London, England

Order this image

Collection

Hardwick Hall, Derbyshire (Accredited Museum)

NT 1127755.1

Summary

One open armchair, of a pair of carved walnut and upholstered high-backed open armchairs, London, c. 1697 - 1702, attributed to Thomas Roberts (fl. 1684 - 1714), ensuite with five stools [NT 1127754.1 - 5]. Another example, believed to be a copy made by the 6th Duke of Devonshire (1790 - 1858) - is NT 1127485. Having a rectangular padded back topped by a pointed arch in a moulded surround enriched with foliated scrolls and projecting at the top corners in bold volutes, flanking pierced foliate scrolls, and issuing diminishing pendants of husks, the moulded arms with scroll terminals and raised on broadening square-section fluted supports on gadrooned square blocks, the moulded seat rails carved at the corners and centres with sprays of foliated scrolls and raised on turned rear supports, the tapering front legs opposing the arm supports above, all united by a curving 'X'-form stretcher centred by a turned spire finial, and on four bun feet. The back panel and seat upholstered in original red velvet, embellished with a central band of scrolling foliage in appliqued metal thread. These extraordinary chairs are attributed to Thomas Roberts, Royal Chairmaker between 1686 and 1713, who supplied the great majority of seat furniture, bed frames and other miscellaneous items to the Royal Palaces in the reigns of James II, William & Mary, William III and Queen Anne. He worked from a premises known as 'The Royal Chair' in Marylebone Street, Westminster until his death in 1714. Influenced by French fashions, they represent a new departure, having removable seats and backs and a new 'cross-frame', or 'cross-stretcher' uniting the legs. The latter design was known in France, and in Holland from the late 1680s, but the 'cross frame' is first referred to in England in a bill of Roberts of 1694, for a chair supplied to Whitehall Palace and described as 'one elbow chair carved rich made of a new fashion with a cross frame and false back and seat with a handsome rail carved on top of the back...Japanned black'. This pair of chairs at Hardwick Hall, although undocumented, are the earliest known chairs resembling the description in Roberts' bill of 1694, and may have been supplied for the Duke of Devonshire c. 1697, possibly to accompany the state bed made for Chatsworth by Francis Lapierre. Their upholstery - which is original - certainly complements the red and silver silk which covers the surviving fragments of the bed. The attribution is not certain, however, and it is possible that they relate to a bill for other seat furniture supplied by Roberts in 1702. The decoration on the moulded back and seat rails - reserves of shallow foliate carving separated by lengths of plain moulding - is to be found on other seat furniture thought to have been supplied by Roberts [see, for instance, NT 1127752]. In addition, the distinctive splay to the back is described in another of Roberts's bills of 1696, 'for a large handsome chair of State the back made to spread out and the Elbowes to turn on the corner' supplied to one of the Royal Palaces. It has even been suggested, in an alternative account of their early provenance, that the similarity of the Hardwick chairs to this description could mean that they were originally supplied to a Royal Palace, and acquired by the Duke of Devonshire at a later date as perquisites. They are also notable in the design of the legs, which are conceived as square pillars, inversely tapered and stop-fluted, with spreading gadrooned capitals, a fashion which was probably adopted in England only shortly before these chairs were made.

Provenance

Believed to have been supplied by Thomas Roberts circa 1697, to accompany the State Bed made for Chatsworth by Francois Lapierre, or possibly relating to a bill of Roberts of 1702. An alternative view is that they were made for a Royal Palace, and acquired by the Duke of Devonshire as a later perquisite. Either way, the chairs were brought to Hardwick Hall from Chatsworth by the 6th Duke of Devonshire circa 1820, and originally placed in the High Great Chamber. They are shown beneath Lapierre's canopy in the Long Gallery in a Country Life photograph of 1928 [Image Number 505936]. Thence by descent until, following the death of Edward William Spencer Cavendish, 10th Duke of Devonshire (1895 - 1950), Hardwick Hall and its contents were accepted by HM Treasury in part payment of death duties and transferred to the National Trust, in 1959.

Makers and roles

attributed to Thomas Roberts, joiner

References

Bowett 2000: Adam Bowett, 'The English "cross-frame" chair, 1694-1715', The Burlington Magazine 142/1167 (June 2000): 344-352 Edwards, Ralph, 1894-1977 shorter dictionary of English furniture : 1964., illustrated p. 130, Figure 55 Bowett 2002 Adam Bowett, English Furniture 1660-1714, 2002 , discussed pp. 242 - 243

View more details