• Item: Chest / Coffer
• Provenance West Country, England, UK
• Period: Charles I
• Circa: 1650
• Wood: Solid oak
• Rare sought after small size
• Primitive six-plank boarded design
• Original demi-lune scribe carvings
• Original Chip edge carvings
• Working striking plate
• Working lock (with working key)
• Original iron strap hinges
• Original candle box
• Original lid, sides, back & bottom
• Original length “v shaped” cut-out bracket feet (stiles)
• Original polish & patination
• Superb deep rich oxblood colour
• Free delivery to England, Wales & Southern Scotland*
• Free 14-day UK returns
Here is a fine quality primitive antique English Charles I English West country antique oak six-plank boarded chest, from the mid 17th century period, circa 1650, in good original condition, with rare sought after small proportions, boasting a warm colour. The coffer is primitively constructed using six planks, with butt joints to the corners, held together by handmade iron nails. The lid, which features a nice over-hang, is decorated with simple thumb moulding to the front and sides of the lid. The hinged lid retains its original iron strap hinges, along with the original striking plate, working lock (with working key).
The interior is clean, dry and the coffer is practical and usable and retains the original candle box. The corners of the chest are decorated with primitive chip edge carvings, and the front displays the original demi-lune scribe carvings, above a carved apron. The carvings to the front of the chest indicate that it may possibly have originated from the West Country, possibly Salisbury. The chest stands on its original length stiles (feet), which were constructed from saw cuts forming v-shaped bracket feet, which were deliberately continued higher on the external surface. It is nice to see the feet at the original height; usually they are cut down, damaged or some get worn away standing on damp / cold floors (as the feet were the main point of contact with damp floors). The back of the coffer features the original rough-hewn back and original floor. The coffer features the original wax polish therefore it has a lovely mellow oak colour and patination.
Such chests were used to store valuable possessions, and were common in many rooms of the house. Sometimes given as a dowry (wedding present); they were lockable and were used to store all manner of valuable possessions from weapons, clothing, and blankets to utensils.
This is an important oak coffer having been around in the days of Charles II, Cromwell’s conquest of Ireland & Scotland and the Great Fire of London. This style of primitive coffer was constructed all over England from the 16th century onwards and was the precursor to the chest of drawers. They were also used as benches. Local carpenters, rather than cabinetmakers made them for ubiquitous use in their local area.
This item would look great in a variety of rooms from the hallway, to the living room or bedroom, as an ottoman at the foot of the bed.
The coffer is in good original condition and featuring the original iron strap hinges, striking plate, original floor, lid, sides and back. The coffer stands on the original length stiles (feet), which is rare to see. The front panel features a working lock (with working key). Nominal old marks to the top, edges, sides and front of the lid but nothing significant considering the age of the item. Such old use marks are inevitable and perfectly acceptable due to its age and use it would have received. The interior is clean, dry, and usable and retains its original candle box. The coffer is solid in joint, it does not wobble on the floor and is ready to use. Considering the age of this early coffer, it is in very good condition!
Height = 53cm or 20⅞” or 1ft 8⅞”
External Width = 107.2cm or 42¼” or 3ft 6¼”
External Depth = 39.1cm or 15⅜” or 1ft 3⅜”
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Ref: Coffer 31