A pair of George II carved giltwood Console Tables,
Provenance: The financier Arthur Grenfell, (1873-1914) and thence by descent to the current owners. Arthur Grenfell's house stood on the site which is now St Mary's Hospital, Roehampton. Grenfell's first wife was Lady Victoria Grey (who died in 1906, leaving him with three young children, one of whom, Reggie, went on to marry the actress and comedienne Joyce Grenfell). In 1909 he married Hilda Lyttelton, which brought extended links to the Gladstones, Balfours, Talbots and others. The Grenfell's had an extraordinary web of connections in social, literary, political and business life and the social gatherings at Roehampton immediately before the First World War would have reflected this. At the startling age of 29 he was dictating terms to Cecil Rhodes regarding the separation of functions in the British South Africa Company and agreeing to raise £1 million loan for Rhodesia.
By 1914 Grenfell's commitments, chiefly in Grand Trunk Railway and Lake Superior Corporation stock, amounted to a nominal value of several millions sterling, which he could not cover. In June 1914 after relinquishing all directorships he sent for sale 67 of his pictures to Christies, including works by Cuyp, Uccello, Reynolds, Hoppner, Morland, Gainsborough, Lawrence and one attributed to Titian. The Titian is now in the Frick Collection in New York. His bankruptcy hearings opened in August 1914, just after the outbreak of war and his personal debts were found to total £1,097,178.
William Jones, architect and designer (active 1737-1757) was an early English Palladian working in the style of William Kent. His works included The Rotunda, Ranelagh Gardens, Chelsea, opened in 1742; Edgecote House, Northants, 1747; Berkeley Chapel, Berkeley Square, 1750 and he was appointed Surveyor to the East India Company in 1752. However, Jones is best known for his design pattern book, THe Gentlemen's or Builders Companion containing useful Designs for Doors, Gateways, Peers , Pavilions, Chimney-pieces etc, printed in 1739 and inscribed "Printed for the Author, and sold ar his house near the Chapple in King Street Golden Square. The second part of the volume consisted of 28 designs for tables, girandoles and mirrors.
A detailed gilding analysis of this lot is available with the department.