A Victorian carved oak centre tableattributed to A.W.N.Pugin
Lot 171
A Victorian carved oak centre tableattributed to A.W.N.Pugin
Sold for £5,000 (US$ 8,404) inc. premium
Lot Details
A Victorian carved oak centre table
attributed to A.W.N.Pugin
The octagonal moulded top above trussed clustered supports joined by a moulded 'H' stretcher, on downswept feet carved with rosettes, on castors, numbered IV on the frame, 197cm wide, 107cm deep, 85cm high (77.5" wide, 42" deep, 33" high).

Footnotes

  • Provenance: by repute Scarisbrick Hall, Lancashire, inherited by the current owner from his father who had owned it since the 1950's and he had always believed it came from Scarisbrick Hall.

    Pugin's first independent architectural commission was for Scarisbrick Hall, Lancashire in 1837 for Charles Scarisbrick (1800-60). Scarisbrick was an enthusiastic collector of medieval objects and had a vision of recreating an 'Old English Catholic mansion' which ended up expanding as his collection grew. On Pugin's death in 1852 the commission was inherited by his son Edward W.Pugin and remained unfinished after the death of Lady Anne Scarisbrick in 1872. Her daughter Eliza Margaret, Marquise de Casteja inherited the house and it became absorbed by the extensive Casteja estates.

    An arm-chair made for Scarisbrick Hall is in the collection at the V & A museum, which has been noted as the only piece known (see P.Atterbury & C.Wainwright), Pugin. However, a carved oak bookcase from Scarisbrick was offered sold Phillips, London, 22 November 1994, lot 237. The bookcase was possibly lot 1790 in the catalogue of sale contents, which took place on the 16th July, 1923, sold by direction of the Marquis de Casteja D.S.O., M.C, and conducted by J.Hatch, Son & Fielding. Although the above lot cannot be firmly identified in the 1923 catalogue, it is possible that it was sold at an earlier point. On Charles' death in 1860, Lady Ann only inherited half of the Hall, most of the furnishings were sold to raise money for his children's trust fund at a previous sale of contents in 1861.

    Pugin's furniture by 1835 had evolved into a more structural Gothic style, as seen illustrated in his, Gothic Furniture of the 15th Cent. (1835). Here, for the first time, his 'principle of revealed construction' was applied to furniture design. A drawing for the kitchen at Scarisbrick illustrates this as it shows a large refectory table in the centre, the design of the side supports reflecting the large roof trusses' 'tusked' tenons, (see C.Gere & M.Whiteway, Nineteenth-Century Design, p.42).

    Pugin's progressive use of the 'tusked' tenon reflected his ideal that:

    '...the smallest detail should have a meaning or serve a purpose; and even the construction itself should vary with the material employed'

    By the late 1840's, Webb, Crace, Myers, Gillow and Holland and Sons were all working to Pugin's designs, making it now challenging to firmly attribute his furniture to one particular cabinet-making firm without documentation, stamps or labels.

    The present lot has similarities to Pugin's own dining table, circa 1845, now in the Palace of Westminster, and a further oak table circa 1840, illustrated p.43 [ibid].
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    Bonhams
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