Side chair

Date: 1765–90

Geography: Made in Boston, Massachusetts, United States

Culture: American

Medium: Mahogany, maple, white pine

Dimensions: 38 3/4 x 23 5/8 x 21 in. (98.4 x 60 x 53.3 cm)

Classification: Furniture

Credit Line: Gift of Mrs. Paul Moore, 1939

Accession Number: 39.88.1


These chairs are among the finest of all Boston seating furniture in the Rococo style. The design of their back is taken verbatim from plate 9 of Robert Manwaring's modest pattern book The Cabinet and Chair-Maker's Real Friend and Companion, which was published in London in 1765, and available in Boston by January 1767. But whereas Manwaring's chair design had plain straight legs and was considered of modest scale and importance, the Boston maker considered his handiwork top of the line and added elegantly carved cabriole legs and claw-and-ball feet.