Regency Specialists in the Antiques Trade
An exquisite pair of Dutch ivory and fruitwood marquetry inlaid walnut side chairs. Each with a foliate Rocaille carved top-rail above vase-shaped splats, the beautifully shaped seat rails, with drop-in seats, are raised on shell-carved cariole front legs with ball and claw feet. Each of the chairs bears the inventory label for Dunecht House.
Dunecht House, in Aberdeenshire, was purchased by Sir Weetman Pearson, 1st Viscount Cowdray, in 1909, for his wife, Lady Annie Pearson, Viscountess Cowdray. Annie Cowdray then set about transforming Dunecht into a much-loved house that, from 1919, became their principle seat. Dunnecht, like Cowdray Park, was decorated with the finest things and these chairs were purchased by Lady Cowdray for Dunecht.
A late George III 18th century two door mahogany and purpleheart inlaid bookcase attributed to Gillows of London and Lancaster was recently bought from us by the Art Department of The Royal Castle in Warsaw Museum, Pl. Zamkowy 4, 00-277 Warsaw, Poland and it is now on display in their collection there.
The moulded cornice sits above a vertical flamed mahogany veneer crossbanded with boxwood stringing and purpleheart. The same crossbanding is above the vertical veneers.
The astragal glazed doors open to reveal the original three solid oak and mahogany tipped shelves. These can be adjusted easily with the individual slats that have been fitted to the bookcase, all original to the time of manufacture. The astragal glazed design is seen in the Gillows sketches that we have illustrated with the stock item. The panes of glass are nearly all original, with the mahogany framed doors supporting broad purpleheart and boxwood strung glazing bars. They are deliberately wider to show off the purpleheart.
The bookcase sits on a figured inlaid mahogany shelf above two cupboard doors. The flamed mahogany inset panelled doors open to reveal a bank of oak-lined and mahogany front drawers. The drawers are fitted with the original gilt brass swan neck handles.
The bookcase is unusually veneered in figured mahogany to the sides and is raised on ogee feet, flanked and decorated with a shaped apron and crossbanded purpleheart veneers.
NB. The bookcase is low waisted and elegantly scaled in proportion. A very fine 18th Sheraton period century bookcase.
Gillows furniture was a byword for quality, and other designers used Gillows to manufacture their furniture. Gillows furniture is referred to by Jane Austen, Thackeray and the first Lord Lytton, as well as in one of Gilbert and Sullivan’s comic operas.
The Gillow sketches included here relate to the current bookcase and the attribution of Gillow.
You can read more about the history of Gillows on our Gillows page.