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THE ST. GILES PENDANTS

england , circa 1760

A magnificent pair of mid 18th century George III carved giltwood wall carvings or pendants, each superby carved with a satyr mask surrounded by acanthus leaves above ribbon-tied trailing arrangements of fruit, wheat sheaves and flowerheads.

Wonderful quality and depth of carving.

Provenance

Almost certainly commissioned by Anthony Ashley-Cooper, 4th Earl of Shaftesbury (1711 - 1771) for St. Giles's House, Dorset;
Thence by descent until sold Christie's London, 26 June 1980

Stock number

Q02.29
Height: 60³/₈ in (153.5 cm)
Width: 13 in (33 cm)
Depth: 5³/₄ in (14.5 cm)
This pair of carved pendants formed part of the decoration of the State Bedroom at St. Giles's House, Dorset. They were taken down in the early part of the 19th century when the room was altered to make way for a new Library. In the 19th century the pendants were used as part of the decoration on a table frame. They were subsequently re-assembled to their original configuration.

Their date would suggest they were commissioned by Lord Shaftesbury after his second marriage in 1759 to Mary Bouverie, daughter of the 1st Viscount Folkestone of Longford Castle, when the house at St. Giles was redecorated in the Rococo style that had recently become fashionable having been introduced from France.

St Giles House in Wimborne St Giles, Dorset is the ancestral home of the Ashley-Cooper family, the Earls of Shaftesbury. Bulit in 1651, the house is Grade 1 listed and is renowned for the superlative furnishings that were commissioned for it during the 18th century but sadly now mostly dispersed. The house lay empty and all but abandoned for many years, but has in recent years undergone a wonderful restoration with the family now living  there once again.
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