Important 17th Century Charles II Marquetry Olive Oyster Lace Box, Circa 1680


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Object Description

A fine and rare 17th century William and Mary olive oyster marquetry lace box, circa 1670-1690. England

Attributed to Gerrit Jensen.

The moulded and holly-banded top has the most wonderful and free-flowing marquetry depicting spring flowers and green foliage (died ox bone), centred by an oval break arch of olive oysters, banded in holly and each quadrant with a sprig of marquetry, all on an ebony ground.

The frieze is decorated to the face with fine oval reserves of marquetry on either side of the brass shield escutcheon. Raised on a cross-grain olive convex moulding.

The box opens to reveal what appears to be the original fitted interior consisting of multiple sections, a lidded compartment, two concealed drawers and a place to store notes.

It should be noted that very few fine marquetry lace boxes from the 17th century are known and this example is, at present, the benchmark.

Gerrit Jensen was one of the foremost cabinet-makers of his day and worked in London from his premises in St. Martin’s Lane. Jensen served the English crown since the reign of Charles II as the accounts of the Royal Household record a payment to him in 1680, for furniture which King Charles II commissioned as a royal gift for the King of Morocco. In 1689, Jensen was appointed royal cabinetmaker to King William III and Queen Mary – ‘Cabinet maker in Ordinary’ to the Crown; and he retained his royal appointment throughout the reign of Queen Anne, supplying furniture for St. James’s Palace, Hampton Court and Kensington Palace. In addition to the Royal family and the Dukes of Devonshire, Jensen also attracted commissions from senior members of the nobility, including the Dukes of Richmond, Hamilton, Montagu and Somerset, collaborating with other leading artists and craftsmen on the decoration of some of the greatest town and country houses in England. Jensen was one of several artist-craftsmen of foreign background employed at the English court, and his work shows a strong Continental influence, reflecting the fashionable French court styles of Pierre Golle, André Charles Boulle and Daniel Marot earning him the title ‘the English Boulle’.

Object Condition

Wear consistent with age and use. Superb original condition. The box is of very good colour and is richly patinated.

Object Details

Dealer Opening Times

By appointment only.

Dealer Contact

Dealer Location

Buscot Manor

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