high-backed Gothic armchair evokes a bishop's throne or chayre as used in the
Middle Ages but with a grace and refinement reserved for the 19th century
revival of the earlier style. Intricate
tracery or fenestrage on the back provides the common theme.
Thecentral panel of the back portrays a classic design from Gothic cathedrals - four
pointed arches, each of which contains two slim lancet arches, supporting a
circular shape having a central quatrefoil surrounded by a tear-drop shape
framed by mouchettes.
Particularlyunusual is the lower panel of the back in which a half-moon shape forms the
main arch and is filled with seemingly every design element known to Gothic
tracery, but in swooping and swirling diagonal forms we have never seen
combined in this way.
Atopthe chair is a wide panel of open tracery framed by a graceful, crocketed ogive
arch and crowned by the stylized flame or fleur-de-lys so characteristic of the
flamboyant Gothic style of the late Middle Ages. Crocketed finials support the panel on either side, each with
containing a lancet arch.
Inkeeping with benches of the Gothic period, and to which this chair owes much of
its overall design, the armrests end in carved, hooded faces. While not identical, the faces have a
similar expression of aloofness, neither happy nor sad.
With a nod to the caquetoire design of armchairs, this chair has a base without a
central stretcher but rather a trapezoidal shape mimicking the seat. Other beautifully carved aspects of this
chair include the bracket at the back of the armrest and the frieze below the
No description would be complete without remarking on the beauty of thewalnut. Not stained too dark, the color
of the wood is bois naturel and the fine grain are visible on the seat - a
pleasing contrast to the intricate carving that characterizes the rest of the