Jan & John Maggs

Antiques and Art

Spectacular Elizabethan or Tudor Court Cupboard

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This sensational early press cupboard with phenomenal carving came to us two decades ago from an estate in the mid-West. Having spent nearly twenty years in Louisiana, it has come back to us, and we’re happy to offer it again.

It is in two parts: the bottom section is larger, with two doors opening to a single compartment with one shelf spanning the space. Above this are two drawers and an open shelf. The upper section is divided by a vertical wall behind the central panel and has a door on each side. Cleats on the interior show that there has been at least one shelf inside.

The carving on the face of the cupboard is quite spectacular. No surface has been left unadorned; even the rails and stiles of the four doors are embellished with geometric and floral motifs

With the exception of four of its six wooden pulls and the moulding around the top, all of the front and two sides appear to be original. Even the massive carved posts are from the period and are probably original as well. Each of the doors is fitted with a wooden turnbuckle.

One of the sides was embellished with carving in Victorian times, making for an interesting contrast between 16th and 19th century carving styles. The second side has no carving, because, one would suppose, the cupboard was in a corner and only one side faced the room.

The back and floor of the lower portion have been replaced, the original wood no doubt having fallen victim to the dampness which pervades the ground floors of older English homes. This is affirmed by the fact that the original back and interior of the upper portion, being further from the damp floor, is still intact.

This is a truly remarkable piece of English furniture, as interesting - on several levels - as it is beautiful.

English, ca.1600

Dimensions: height: 64 ½”; width: 65"; depth: 23"

SOLD

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Inventory #26382

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