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Photo: Courtesy The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, 10.125.691
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Carver chair


Object number

RIF4148

Maker

Maker Unknown

Dimensions

Height, overall: 46 1/4 in. (117.475 cm) Height, seat: 17 3/4 in. (45.085 cm) Width, seat front: 24 7/8 in. (63.183 cm) Width, seat back: 18 3/4 in. (47.625 cm) Depth, seat: 17 5/8 in. (44.768 cm)

Date

1660–1700

Current location

The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York

Geography

Probably made in southeastern New England, or possibly made in Rhode Island
(view a map of Rhode Island)

Medium

Ash

Marks

Unknown

Inscriptions

Unknown

Style

William and Mary

Provenance

H. Eugene Bolles (1838–1910), Boston; sold to Mrs. Russell Sage, New York, 1909; given to The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York

Associated names

H. Eugene Bolles

Construction

The rear posts taper somewhat from the seat toward either extremity. Both front and rear posts have a built-in backward cant; the mortises for the side members are not drilled at a right angle to the posts. X-radiographs taken to confirm this revealed that the frame is joined with round tenons that have an unusual profile: toward the end the tenons are notched and beyond the notch the tenon tapers. The mortises for the joints of the arms, seat rails, and stretchers are drilled tangential to a work line of the posts; those for the joints of the back rails are centered on a line. On the right rear post is a round hole where the maker mistakenly began to drill the mortise for the upper side stretcher below rather than above the layout line. The rear and side crosspieces are of the same length. Source: Frances Gruber Safford, American Furniture in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, (New York, N.Y.: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 2007), 28.

Bibliography

Herman Hjorth, "Early American Furniture," Science and Mechanics (April 1946): fig. 16.
Henry W. Kent and Florence N. Levy, The Hudson-Fulton Celebration: Catalogue of an Exhibition Held in The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 2, exh. cat. (New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, 1909), 34–35, 48, no. 59, ill.
Bernice B. Osburn and Burl N. Osburn, Measured Drawings of Early American Furniture (Milwaukee, Wisc.: Bruce Publishing Company, 1926), 11, ill.
Henry Lionel Williams, Country Furniture of Early America (New York: Barnes, 1963), 33, no. 5.
Lester Margon, More American Furniture Treasures, 1620–1840 (New York: Architectural Book Publishing, 1971), 99, ill.
John G. Shea, Antique Country Furniture of North America (Florence, Ky.: Van Nostrand Reinhold, 1975), 137, (includes measured drawings), ill.
Frances Gruber Safford, American Furniture in the Metropolitan Museum of Art: 1. Early Colonial Period, The Seventeenth-Century and William and Mary Styles (New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, 2007), 28–29, no. 7, ill.