Pelham Olive's Collection of Antique Oak Furniture and Delftware Comes to London

Bonhams is delighted to offer The Olive Collection at its New Bond Street saleroom in London on Thursday 31 January. The sale will feature Pelham Olive's extensive collection of antique oak furniture and delftware including an exceptionally rare joined oak folding table, circa 1530-50. With an estimate of £30,000-50,000, it is one of the main highlights in the sale. Dating from the reign of Henry VIII, the table was previously in the English Collection of Judith Hamilton, Boarsney House, East Sussex.

Also in the sale is an extraordinary 1650 early London delftware drinking cup in the shape of a postillion's boot. Popular in their day, very few of these boots survived and indeed this the only known example of its type. An inscription round the top of the boot reads 'OH. MY. HEAD. - a timely reminder of the perils of overindulgence. It has an estimate of £16,000-25,000.

Pelham was the son of Gabriel Olive, one of the founders of the Regional Furniture Society, and grew up surrounded by his father's assortment of rare antiques and artefacts. His father was fascinated by the social and cultural context of furniture and dedicated his life to the study of British regional furniture-making traditions while owning a shop in Wincanton, Somerset. Pelham said that growing up helping his father in his workshop kindled in him a childhood interest in antiques which has endured throughout his life.

The pieces featured in the collection, amassed over Pelham's lifetime, have all been carefully selected and researched often with the help of his close friend Victor Chinnery, founder of the Regional Furniture Society alongside his father. Some works were previously part of the famous collections of Simon Sainsbury, Syd Levethan and John & Judith Adler, among others.

Highlights in the 267-lot sale include:

• An impressive Henry VIII joined oak and walnut livery cupboard, circa 1530, with restorations. Estimate £60,000-80,000

• A magnificent joined oak folding-table, circa 1530-50, with an estimate of £30,000-50,000

• An exceptionally rare Elizabeth I oak so-called Glastonbury armchair, West Country, possibly Somerset, circa 1570-1600. Estimate £20,000-30,000

• An exceptional London Delftware 'Bossed' Tankard, Dated 1653, with an estimate of £30,000-40,000.


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