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  • image Image 1 for XF264
  • image Image 2 for XF264
Scroll-shaped foot stool, XF264, one of a pair with XF263, English, unknown maker, c.1830. ©Sir John Soane's Museum, London. Photograph: Hugh Kelly.
  • image Image 1 for XF264
  • image Image 2 for XF264

Scroll-shaped foot stool, English, unknown maker, c.1830

Mahogany upholstered in leather

Height: 42cm
Width: 29cm
Length: 59cm

Museum number: XF264

Curatorial note

With wide reeded moulding along the sides to the roundel at the scroll end and curved legs. Button-upholstered in wine leather and with shaped leather cushion. Pair to XF265.

These stools are described in the furniture inventory of 1837 as ‘covered with Morocco Leather as the chairs’. This seems to refer to the set of trellis-back dining room chairs ‘covered with crimson Morocco Leather’ (XF113 etc.) rather than to the ‘Easy chairs’ (XF265 and XF266) described as covered in ‘purple leather’, which these stools match today.

John Robins supplied Soane with ‘A Mahogany Gouty Stool and Cushion £1.18’ in February 1802, presumably for his new country house at Pitzhanger in Ealing. In April 1827 Soane purchased a ‘Leg Rest covered in blue morocco’ for £3.10 from John Mactavish of 81 Titchfield Street, Cavendish Square.1 It is possible that cats 17-18 are these two stools, and that Mr. Mactavish copied the stool made for Soane much earlier by Robins. The other stool, XF263, with a very simple scroll end, is a considerably more elegant piece than this one, XF264 which is much coarser (it has paterae at the scroll end). XF264 seems likely to be a copy of XF263.

They were perhaps inspired by antique examples such as those published by Charles Heathcote Tatham.2

1 SM Archive 7/9/3.
2 Charles Heathcote Tatham, Etchings … of Ancient Ornamental Architecture drawn from the originals in Rome …, 1803, pl. 73 and 77.

If you have any further information about this object, please contact us: worksofart@soane.org.uk