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Highlights from Fine Interiors | 19 November 2019

The Grade I listed Moor Park Mansion will again host Fine Interiors this November | Featuring a wide range of early furniture, English and Continental furniture, fine silver, rugs and carpets,  as well as a Private Collection of early 19th century Swedish Röllakan tapestry hangings | Viewing opens: Saturday 16 November, 12pm-4pm

From the selection of early furniture in Fine Interiors this large Welsh oak boarded chest dates from c. 1620. Its distinctive design associates it with the historic constituencies of Breconshire and Radnorshire (the two merged to form Brecon and Radnor at the 1918 general election) and this is because its front and side boards are nailed into hollowed out uprights which continue down to the feet. The chest features a moulded lid with a band of punch-marked arcaded decoration either side of the lock and an ogee-shaped lower frieze rail. The piece is 79cm high and 130cm wide.

The sides of this George II walnut and parcel gilt mirror are hung with elegant tasselled drapery, the frame is surmounted by a broken swan neck pediment with flowerhead terminals, centred by a lion rampant sable cresting – the arms for the Cowan family of Ireland.  The mirror might possibly have been owned by Robert Cowan (died 1737), an Irish colonial administrator was the East India Company’s Governor of Bombay from 1727-34. His sister, Mary Cowan, married Alexander Stewart, father of Robert Stewart, the 1st Marquess of Londonderry. Robert Cowan’s considerable Estate was inherited by Mary and Alexander, and in 1750 they re-built Mount Pleasant, a house located close to Newtonards, thereafter it was known as Mount Stewart.

In this charming large arched en grisaille oil on canvas a ship provides the focus for the activities of four cherubs – one hangs in the air, blowing a trumpet with a laurel wreath in his hand, one rides a dolphin, another is guiding the ship and the fourth stands on the deck with an oar in his hand. The term ‘en grisaille’ is used to describe paintings executed in grey or another neutral grey colour to imitate sculpture, and it is widely used in decorative schemes. Although much less widespread in the 20th century, Pablo Picasso’s epic painting Guernica (1937) is an example of a work en grisaille.

This rare 18th century West Indian silver cream jug bears the Assay Master’s mark of Anthony Danvers, Jamaica, circa 1760, with AD and alligator head to the base. 17th and 18th century Jamaican silver is not plentiful in the category of Colonial silver, although, an account of life in Port Royal, Jamaica’s principal town in the 17th century, indicates that almost every house possessed a quantity of silver. Early 18th century inventories show that around 150 goldsmiths were working on the island. The alligator head is a standard mark for Jamaican silver, and between 1747 and 1765 an assay master was employed by the British crown; the most notable of these was Anthony Danvers and he took up his post in Jamaica in 1749.

This fine Austrian silver-gilt and enamel mounted carved rock crystal oval covered bowl on stand dates from circa 1880. It is richly decorated with classical figures, masks, scrolling foliage and bunches of grapes, on a pale turquoise ground, and the inside of the bowl and cover are similarly decorated. The cover continues one of the themes, with a grape cluster finial. The stem is designed as a faun – he is captured stepping over the base of a tree trunk and holds a large fish under each arm. At the time specialist enamel workshops were also in existence in France and England.

Into the early 20th century, this stylish Edwardian silver rose bowl captures the restrained and refined aesthetic of the Art Nouveau era. Its surface echoes the floral refrain with sinuous lilies chased in relief and it was made in 1907 by Elkington & Co., London. Founded in 1836 in Birmingham the firm was highly successful in the Great Exhibition of 1851 held in London. Elkington & Co. held Royal Warrants for Queen Victoria, and for all successive monarchs up to King George VI. Art Nouveau was at its height from 1890 to 1910 and took its design inspiration from supple natural forms, as seen in this rose bowl both in terms of its decoration and graceful form.

Auction information: 

Fine Interiors | 11am, Tuesday 19 November 2019 | Moor Park Mansion, Rickmansworth, Hertfordshire, WD3 1QL

Viewing: Saturday 16 November, 12pm-4pm | Sunday 17 November, 11am-3pm | Monday 18 November, 9am-5pm | Restricted viewing on day of sale, Tuesday 19 November

For all auction enquiries contact: Guy Savill and Sally Stratton MRICS | +44 (0) 207 281 2790 |

Showing on the previous page: George III oak and mahogany crossbanded dresser, West Midlands, circa 1780, est. £3,000-5,000 (+fees)

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Large oak boarded chest, Welsh Borders, circa 1620, est. £2,500-3,500 (+fees)

George II walnut and parcel gilt mirror, est. £4,000-6,000 (+fees)

Large arched en grisaille oil on canvas, est. £6,000-8,000 (+fees)

Rare 18th century West Indian silver cream jug, Jamaica, circa 1760, est. £2,000-2,500 (+fees)

Assay Master's mark of Anthony Danvers, AD, and alligator head, on the base of the silver cream jug

Fine Austrian silver-gilt and enamel mounted carved rock crystal oval covered bowl on stand, Vienna, circa 1880, est. £5,000-6,000 (+fees)

Detail of the stem, modelled as a faun, from the covered bowl on stand

Edwardian silver Art Nouveau rose bowl by Elkington & Co., London, 1907