Pierre Gole (c.1620-1684)
This carved, gilded and silvered table with a top of pewter inlaid with elaborate scroll foliage of engraved brass is thought to have been made in the workshop of Pierre Gole (1620-84) in Paris. The scroll legs with paw feet and platform stretchers terminating in fleur-de-lys at the four corners as well as the festoons of flowers and foliage tied with ribbons are probably the work of the French sculptor Mathieu Lespagnandelle (c.1616-89), while the gilding is attributed to David Dupré. The Knole tradition is that this rare Parisian furniture was given by Louis XIV to Charles Sackville, the future 6th Earl of Dorset, when ambassador to the French Court, together with a pair of torchères representing two of the four seasons of the year (129520.1 and 129520.2). The Knole set is associated with a 1671 royal command for two tables, four torchères and eight low stools in silvered and gilded wood. All three, Gole, Lespagnandelle and Dupré were mentioned in this document. There is, however, the complication that Sackville left Paris in 1670, the year before, so the part set may have been sent on by the king to Sackville or it may have come to Knole in some other way. It was first probably listed at Knole by 1799 and definitely in 1864.
Possibly presented to Charles Sackville, Lord Buckhurst (later 6th Earl of Dorset) by King Louis XIV of France. Knole and the majority of its furniture were accepted by HM Treasury in part payment of death duties and transferred to the National Trust in 1946.
Makers and roles
Pierre Gole (c.1620-1684), cabinet maker Mathieu Lespagnandelle (Paris 1616 - 1689), carver David Dupré (active in 1670), gilder
Lunsingh Scheurleer 1980: Theodoor Herman Lunsingh Scheurleer, ‘Pierre Gole, Ébéniste du roi Louis XIV’, The Burlington Magazine CXXII (June 1980): 380-94 Lunsingh Scheurleer 2005: Theodoor Herman Lunsingh Scheurleer, Pierre Gole: Ébéniste de Louis XIV, Dijon 2005 Snodin and Llewellyn 2009: Michael Snodin and Nigel Llewellyn (eds), Baroque: Magnificence & Style (ex. cat.), London 2009