Otis House

Side Chair

By the early nineteenth century, the neoclassical style had evolved from two-dimensional use of classical motifs as surface decoration to full-blown emulation of three-dimensional classical forms. These chairs, derived from the ancient Greek Klismos form, are embellished with neoclassical motifs of a quiver and arrow carved on its crest rail and a deeply carved swirling rosette in its narrow horizontal splat.

Klismos-style chairs were most popular during the fifth century in Greece. In the late eighteenth century, Western neoclassical style furniture makers and designers revived and reinterpreted the Klismos style. Six chairs in the Historic New England collection, four side chairs and two arm chairs, were originally part of a set of twenty-four purchased by Nathan Appleton for his Beacon Street home (built in 1818).

One of a set of six chairs
Thomas Seymour (1771-1848) and Isaac Vose (1767-1823), attributed makers
Boston, Massachusetts, 1818
Mahogany, leather

1964.392AB, 1991.115.1-4