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Unique 18th Century Tall Back Carved Turner’s Chair, Statement Throne Chair

Unique 18th Century Tall Back Carved Turner’s Chair, Statement Throne Chair

A fantastic, hugely impressive and interesting one-of-a-kind antique Turner’s Chair. Likely made in England in the 18th Century and earlier, it makes an incredible statement chair with fantastic carvings and a rare bygone and almost-Brutalist look and will add unique antique decorative charm, interest and centuries’ old craftsmanship and style to any interior.


Elaborately carved and much taller than most Turner’s chairs, this is in wonderful condition and is dripping with age, character and intrigue. The rounded, turned sections of the chair, along with the triangular seat, are likely made from fruitwood and finished in a rich dark lacquer that has faded in places to show lovely aged patina. The three tapering legs are wonderfully chunky and have attractive matching turned feet, with the front two having ball finial tops for hand rests, showing gorgeous signs of ageing. The relatively simple sleek arms and lower stretchers slot into the legs via tapering turned ends and the vertical seat support has more flamboyant wavy turnings.


What really makes this already outstanding Turner’s chair an especially rare and interesting example and an exceptional one-off piece, is its unusually tall cruciform back, comprising of a central vertical panel adorned with an extraordinary bas relief carving, enveloped by a round-edged horizontal crosspiece; both of which, in contrast to the turned sections of the chair, appear to be oak, having a slightly more worn and lighter, nutty-brown finish. Primitively carved into the central vertical panel is a Green Man-esque figure of a lad with a huge mane of hair and beard and leaves in his hair. He sits on a barrel wearing short trousers and a tunic, with a cup in his right hand and holding onto a vine with his left, surrounded by an abundance of plump grapes and vineyard foliage that towers above him.


This rather rustic, jovial and primitively carved scene seems slightly at odds with the somewhat austere and imposing ecclesiastic-throne style of the chair itself and we think it very likely that the cruciform oak sections (the carved back panel and enveloping horizontal crosspiece) were an earlier pre-existing panel carving, possibly taken from a Tudor tavern or the like, which our 18th Century wood-turner later reused to craft this splendid and unique chair.



With written accounts going back to the 13th Century, Turner’s Chairs became fashionable in Elizabethan England and then later in 17th Century Holland and New England. So-called because the parts are turned on a pole-lathe by a wood-turner, they can also be called Thrower’s chairs (from the olde English ‘throwen’) and were a way for craftsmen to display their skills by producing outstanding decorative chairs.


Although Turner’s chairs are notoriously hard to date, this fantastic example is certainly extremely old and leaves clues to strongly suggest it was made in the 18th Century, with parts very probably a good deal older than that. The heavy and wide legs, arms and stretchers are relatively simply turned, without excessive decoration, which suggests it could date back to the 1700s when that was the style for Turner’s chairs. And being three-legged suggests it might even be much older, as the first Turner’s chairs were three-legged.


Overall this is a fantastic one-of-a-kind antique statement chair that will forever be a talking point for its extremely rare commanding throne-like style as well as its only-to-be-guessed-at history – this is the perfect chair for antique furniture and history lovers alike!



This is in excellent antique condition. Structurally sound and sturdy, reassuringly heavy and built to last, it has only the most minor cosmetic signs of its age, presumably because it’s been used more as a decorative object rather than an everyday chair. There are some hard-to-see historic woodworm holes on the left leg, and the whole chair has been treated for good measure, but overall it's in outstanding condition and if well looked after could well last for another 200-300+ years – please see the photos.



Height - 106.5cm, Width - 63cm, Depth - 60.5cm, Seat Height - 42.5cm, Seat Width between front legs - 48cm, Seat Depth - 47cm, Weight - 14kg.



UK delivery price quoted, collection also available from Warwick. Please CONTACT US FOR INTERNATIONAL DELIVERY QUOTES - the current International delivery quote is just a place-holder.



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