Show me:
and
Clear all filters

  • 25 items Explore
  • 38 items
  • 25 items Explore
  • 48 items
  • 89 items
  • 3,457 items Explore
  • 97 items Explore
  • 3 items
  • 4 items
  • 42 items
  • 11,029 items Explore
  • 209 items Explore
  • 1,235 items Explore
  • 8,509 items Explore
  • 5,048 items Explore
  • 72 items Explore
  • 128 items Explore
  • 3 items
  • 10,583 items Explore
  • 13,624 items Explore
  • 4,620 items Explore
  • 1 items
  • 5 items
  • 150 items Explore
  • 2,020 items Explore
  • 2 items
  • 4,714 items Explore
  • 24 items Explore
  • 439 items Explore
  • 19,174 items Explore
  • 34 items Explore
  • 1,903 items Explore
  • 1,111 items Explore
  • 6 items
  • 4,726 items Explore
  • 455 items Explore
  • 29 items
  • 920 items Explore
  • 1 items
  • 1 items Explore
  • 5 items
  • 8 items
  • 19,084 items Explore
  • 787 items Explore
  • 19 items
  • 73 items Explore
  • 33 items
  • 800 items
  • 25 items
  • 61 items
  • 28 items
  • 303 items Explore
  • 6 items
  • 44 items Explore
  • 1 items
  • 2 items
  • 145 items
  • 2 items
  • 7 items
  • 121 items Explore
  • 119 items
  • 1 items
  • 1,020 items Explore
  • 820 items
  • 95 items
  • 27 items
  • 7 items
  • 27,199 items Explore
  • 1 items
  • 3,826 items Explore
  • 1,528 items Explore
  • 403 items
  • 158 items Explore
  • 9,673 items Explore
  • 9,685 items Explore
  • 4 items
  • 1 items
  • 4 items
  • 39 items
  • 3 items
  • 4 items
  • 5,224 items Explore
  • 6,046 items Explore
  • 4,055 items Explore
  • 1,513 items Explore
  • 929 items Explore
  • 3,495 items Explore
  • 3 items
  • 312 items
  • 1 items
  • 1 items
  • 3,354 items Explore
  • 20 items Explore
  • 336 items Explore
  • 793 items Explore
  • 1,116 items Explore
  • 510 items Explore
  • 917 items Explore
  • 1,138 items
  • 89 items
  • 126 items Explore
  • 6,953 items Explore
  • 170 items
  • 310 items
  • 7 items Explore
  • 4 items
  • 27 items
  • 61 items
  • 300 items Explore
  • 2 items
  • 2,920 items Explore
  • 1,514 items Explore
  • 82 items
  • 43 items
  • 19,434 items Explore
  • 1,222 items Explore
  • 138 items
  • 1,433 items Explore
  • 32 items
  • 1 items
  • 132 items Explore
  • 24 items
  • 40 items
  • 20 items
  • 252 items
  • 314 items
  • 859 items Explore
  • 1,897 items
  • 350 items Explore
  • 2,424 items
  • 2,524 items
  • 6 items
  • 3 items
  • 3 items
  • 4,390 items Explore
  • 1 items
  • 34,000 items Explore
  • 1 items
  • 3,293 items Explore
  • 274 items Explore
  • 8,066 items Explore
  • 31 items
  • 25 items
  • 723 items Explore
  • 3 items
  • 65 items
  • 160 items
  • 52 items
  • 21,464 items Explore
  • 915 items
  • 18 items
  • 22,047 items Explore
  • 2 items
  • 2,331 items Explore
  • 1 items
  • 1,051 items Explore
  • 59 items
  • 499 items
  • 3,289 items Explore
  • 174 items
  • 453 items Explore
  • 3 items
  • 21 items
  • 90 items Explore
  • 76 items
  • 289 items Explore
  • 1 items
  • 6 items
  • 128 items
  • 295 items
  • 752 items
  • 878 items
  • 1 items
  • 369 items Explore
  • 273 items Explore
  • 11,307 items Explore
  • 760 items Explore
  • 6,022 items Explore
  • 10 items
  • 6,963 items Explore
  • 27 items
  • 5,323 items Explore
  • 4 items
  • 3,729 items Explore
  • 9,177 items Explore
  • 7,705 items Explore
  • 201 items
  • 19 items
  • 142 items
  • 7 items
  • 991 items Explore
  • 18 items
  • 4,199 items Explore
  • 1 items
  • 4 items
  • 1,096 items Explore
  • 224 items
  • 1 items
  • 3,491 items Explore
  • 20 items
  • 696 items Explore
  • 18 items
  • 134 items
  • 3,604 items Explore
  • 13,448 items Explore
  • 2,715 items Explore
  • 1 items
  • 8 items
  • 9,287 items Explore
  • 37 items
  • 2 items
  • 21,323 items Explore
  • 131 items
  • 38 items
  • 13,073 items Explore
  • 3,316 items Explore
  • 2,132 items Explore
  • 163 items
  • 41,195 items Explore
  • 639 items Explore
  • 415 items
  • 23,285 items Explore
  • 218 items
  • 3 items
  • 1 items
  • 20 items
  • 30 items
  • 253 items Explore
  • 4 items
  • 217 items Explore
  • 1 items
  • 13,109 items Explore
  • 3 items
  • 10,261 items
  • 9 items
  • 10 items
  • 14 items
  • 25 items
  • 4,549 items Explore
  • 918 items Explore
  • 1 items
  • 1 items
  • 1 items
  • 220 items
  • 702 items Explore
  • 42 items
  • 2,283 items Explore
  • 1,661 items Explore
  • 15 items
  • 1,910 items Explore
  • 151 items
  • 84 items
  • 771 items Explore
  • 3,298 items Explore
  • 42 items
  • 22 items
  • 12 items
  • 10,637 items Explore
  • 22,686 items Explore
  • 2 items
  • 1 items
  • 2 items
  • 1,373 items
  • 180 items Explore
  • 7 items
  • 8 items
  • 92 items
  • 13,045 items Explore
  • 3,566 items Explore
  • 2,642 items Explore
  • 4,766 items Explore
  • 22 items
  • 45 items
  • 1 items
  • 6,896 items Explore
  • 4,791 items Explore
  • 271 items Explore
  • 2,300 items Explore
  • 2,606 items Explore
  • 3 items
  • 1,866 items Explore
  • 60 items
  • 223 items Explore
  • 443 items Explore
  • 5,883 items Explore
  • 8,807 items Explore
  • 1,851 items Explore
  • 5,765 items Explore
  • 3,338 items Explore
  • 11,063 items Explore
  • 86 items
  • 11 items
  • 1,639 items Explore
  • 7 items
  • 24 items
  • 51 items
  • 6 items
  • 1 items
  • 2,303 items Explore
  • 620 items Explore
  • 62 items
  • 17 items
  • 151 items Explore
  • 1 items
  • 87 items Explore
  • 1 items
  • 464 items
  • 996 items
  • 3,600 items Explore
  • 5 items
  • 9,397 items Explore
  • 48 items Explore
  • 4 items
  • 42 items
  • 3 items
  • 13,693 items Explore
  • 1,190 items Explore
  • 92 items
  • 10,559 items Explore
  • 1,006 items Explore
  • 1,925 items
  • 6,041 items Explore
  • 21 items
  • 12,938 items Explore
  • 1,417 items Explore
  • 6 items
  • 9,560 items Explore
  • 16,299 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
  • 7,383 items Explore
  • 1 items
  • 399 items Explore
  • 13 items
  • 4 items
  • 3 items
  • 6 items
  • 4 items
  • 103 items Explore
  • 7 items
  • 5 items
  • 480 items
  • 183 items Explore
  • 8,394 items Explore
  • 55 items
  • 23,515 items Explore
  • 7,350 items Explore
  • 5 items
  • 26 items
  • 3,626 items Explore
  • 454 items
  • 326 items Explore
  • 12,682 items Explore
  • 55 items
  • 20 items
  • 7 items
  • 4 items
  • 315 items Explore
  • 451 items
  • 184 items
  • 3,620 items Explore
  • 27 items
  • 1,227 items Explore
  • 2,370 items Explore
  • 732 items Explore
  • 36 items
  • 1,147 items Explore
  • 97 items Explore
  • 42 items
  • 225 items Explore
  • 71,389 items Explore
  • 1 items
  • 3,064 items Explore
  • 2,843 items Explore
  • 28 items
  • 3,617 items Explore
  • 1,833 items Explore
  • 4 items
  • 17,102 items Explore
  • 5,504 items Explore
  • 7 items
  • 624 items Explore
  • 85 items
  • 464 items
  • 39 items
  • 76 items
  • 29 items
  • 335 items
  • 3 items
  • 41 items
  • 1,175 items Explore
  • 109 items
  • 805 items
  • 30 items
  • 10,718 items Explore
  • 27 items
  • 13 items
  • 1,566 items Explore
  • 1 items
  • 266 items
  • 16,828 items Explore
  • 78 items
  • 17 items
  • 1 items
  • 10 items
  • 6 items
  • 324 items
  • 2 items
  • 628 items Explore
  • 1,594 items Explore
  • 1,033 items Explore
  • 2 items
  • 261 items

Select a time period

Or choose a specific year

Clear all filters

Chair

Category

Furniture

Date

circa 1640 - 1680 (and later)

Materials

Ebony, cane, brass

Measurements

91 x 45 x 47 cm

Place of origin

Coromandel Coast

Collection

Penrhyn Castle, Gwynedd (Accredited Museum)

NT 1420722.7

Summary

A backstool, one of a set of ten turned and carved ebony cane-seated backstools, or chairs, Coromandel Coast, circa 1640-80. With minor difference in design, and all with modifications to the legs and later castors, probably made in the 1830s. Each having a shaped cresting rail carved with Indian flora above an arcade of eight spiral-turned, swelling spindles, spaced by seven onion-shaped finials, a shaped carved rail below and all between floral-carved uprights topped by foliate finials. Each with a cane seat in carved set rails and raised on four block- and spiral-turned legs joined by conforming foot stretchers.

Full description

Backstools, or chairs, like this, made of carved and turned ebony, were made in south-eastern India, in states bordering the Bay of Bengal on what is now called the ‘Coromandel’ Coast. Rich in natural resources, the area attracted European trading interest from the middle of the 17th century and this led to the emergence of a market in carved ebony furniture – heavily influenced by Dutch fashions – of which there are several examples in National Trust collections. These chairs are an interesting amalgam: the form, particularly the spiral-turned legs, is typically European, but the carved flowers are species indigenous to India and their abundance on these chairs typical of the 17th century Indian aesthetic. There are over fifty pieces of ebony furniture (from various places and of various dates) at Penrhyn - a house furnished by a fortune amassed from slave-owning in Jamaica - most of which were probably acquired around 1830 during the expansion and transformation of Penrhyn Castle by the architect Thomas Hopper (1776-1856) for George Hay Dawkins-Pennant (1764-1840). The legs of these chairs were probably made then: the castors are typical of the early 19th century. It has been said that no other group of ‘Indo-European’ furniture has been as misunderstood as this one. In England, they were made fashionable by Horace Walpole (1717-97), who believed that they were English, and even in the 20th century chairs of this type were being described as ‘Jacobean’ or ‘Indo-Portuguese’. The recent revival in scholarly interest in Indian furniture, however, has shown (using inventories of the Dutch East India Company) without doubt that the Coromandel Coast was the centre for production. Later examples were made in Sri Lanka and Jakarta, Indonesia.

References

Jaffer 2001 : Amin Jaffer, Furniture from British India and Ceylon, a catalogue of the collection in the Victoria and Albert Museum and the Peabody Essex Museum, London, V&A publications, 2001.

View more details