Antique Chairs - Item 4126
Gothic Armchair or Throne Chair
down for additional photos)
||Gothic Armchair or "Throne" Chair
||Width 26, Height 57, Depth 21½ (in inches)
high-backed armchair is an imposing presence, incorporating both Gothic design
elements with a touch of the Renaissance but allowing the beauty of the old
growth walnut to shine through in its own right.
central part of the back, unadorned, is in the shape of a shield. Above it is a graceful ogive arch filled
with open tracery combining soufflets in a circular motif, reminiscent of the
yin and yang of Chinese philosophy.
Topping the arch is a three-dimensional fleur-de-lys or iris, also
interpretable as a flame as found in the flambe atop Gothic arches in the late
Gothic style of architecture and decoration known as flamboyant.
the central shield comprising the bank are tiny Gothic arches, finely detailed
in an open fenestrage or tracery design.
the sides of the back panel are square pillars, with a lancet design on the
front, crowned by four-sided triangular finials reminiscent of the peaked roofs
and bell towers. These finials and the
central one are all topped the same square ornamental design.
armrests are imposing, curving graceful at their ends and united with the seat
by an X-shaped pattern from which trefoil patterns have been carved out to
reveal yet more tracery.
seat rests atop four legs, the front two of which are carved in the diagonal
pattern typical of columns in Gothic cathedrals.
sloping, the back of chair is designed for comfort and achieves that objective
despite the lack of cushions or upholstery.
The reverse side of the back, although not designed to be seen, is
beautifully finished in a manner that draws attention to the fine grain and
subtle coloration of the walnut.
Ader-Tajan, Collection Bruno Perrier Haute
Epoque (Catalog for Sale at Auction on April 6, 1992 at the Hôtel Drouot,
Paris); Boccador, Jacqueline, Le Mobilier Français du Moyen Age à la
Renaissance, Editions d'Art Monelle Hayot (Saint-Just-en-Chaussée, 1988);
Charles, Corinne, Visions d'Intérieurs, du
Meuble au Décor (Paris-Musées, Paris, 2003); Thirion, Jacques, Le Mobilier du Moyen Age et de la Renaissance en France
(Editions Faton, Dijon, 1998); Viollet-le-Duc, Eugène, Le Mobilier Médiéval
(Georges Bernage, editor) (Editions Heimdal, 2003)
by the 19th century French novelist Victor Hugo who collected Gothic Revival
furniture, such a high-backed chair is ideal for a dining room, signaling the
rank of paterfamilias or otherwise elevated status. It would also
lend authority to a foyer or entryway, library, or any room inviting a bit of