American Furniture By E. T. Joy

after her death. However, for the next half-century, even up to 1755-60, it was the fashion and standard in good furniture. Expansion was the order of the day in America. The wilderness was being pushed back ever farther from the coast; new villages and towns were being founded; cities were growing larger; trade and agriculture were increasing by leaps and bounds; many new and especially pleasant houses were being built; Queen Anne furniture was ideally suited to dress them; and cabinet-making had reached a new high level of skill. In consequence, a good deal of fine furniture in the Queen Anne style was made in America. Hogarth's 'line of beauty', the wavelike, cyma curve, characterized it.

Chair legs, chair seats, chair backs, chair splats, all were curved, front view and profile. Spacious wing chairs, comfortably upholstered, came into use. Also corner chairs, and those stick-and-spindle chairs, open, cool American Windsors. Even sofas in the Queen Anne style were made, though but a few. On case pieces as well as on chairs and sofas the rounded Dutch or club foot was much used, its popularity continuing long after the claw-and-ball foot came in. On highboys and low¬boys the six turned legs were superseded by four cabriole legs, with hints of the missing two appearing as pendant knobs, centre front.

Secretaries and clothes cupboards incorporated Queen Anne style elements, such as doors with the panels arched. A few four-post bedsteads with cabriole legs and Dutch feet have survived. Tables also often had Dutch-type feet and cabriole or at least curved legs, while that most popular Ameri¬can table up to then, the gate-leg, gradually gave way to the drop-leaf table, in which hinged leaves were propped up by swinging arms or legs without gate features.

Many drop-leaf tables are squares or rectangles when open; numerous oval and circular ones also occur. A separate word about Queen Anne mirrors should be added, since they were probably the first fine mirrors made in America. Usually the glass is in two parts, quite visibly, no moulding or other covering masking the joint. The upper glass section is shaped to fit the cyma-curved and arched frame in which a cresting is sometimes carved.

They continued in favour almost up to the time of the Revolution. Early Georgian: since furniture based on the Queen Anne style was popular in America until 1755-60, sundry features and developments readily recognized in England as Early Georgian features are often com¬bined with it. The term Early Georgian is, however, seldom used in describing American-made furniture. In fact, the transition from Queen Anne to Chippendale's style is far more abrupt in America than in England.

Chippendale: in 1754 Thomas Chippen¬dale published in London his now celebrated book of English furniture designs that gathered into one volume the various new tendencies which had been appearing in English furniture since the death of Queen Anne in 1714. Chippendale's designs brought to a head the transitional furniture tendencies of Early Georgian England, a transition which may be briefly described as a turning from the Dutch toward the French style. A few American adaptations of these Early Georgian characteristics had appeared a decade or two before Chippendale's book was published.

But the force of the change from Queen Anne lines was not felt in America until about 1760, when the Chippen¬dale style burst forth with all the popular impact of a triumphant fashion. Americans from that day to this have used the term Chippendale to mean Early Georgian furni¬ture with Dutch characteristics (shell-carving, cabriole legs, claw-and-ball feet, the Cupid's bow top rail), and to include the mid-eighteenth-century Georgian Gothic, Chinese and French Louis XV features which occur in Chippendale's drawings, as well as the flowing rocopo carving and embellishment in which he* loved to specialize. American furniture based on his designs reached its most elaborate development in Philadelphia between 1760 and 1776, under superb cabinet-makers such as Affleck, Folwell, Randolph and Savery. However, neither in Philadelphia nor anywhere else were Ameri¬can Chippendale pieces as large, as lordly, or as lavishly ornamented as in England. In

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