An absolutely gorgeous early antique Charles II quarter sawn oak thick plank coffer/chest/trunk. Exceptional quality, one of the best we have had in, with beautiful hand carved/punched detailing to front in old English scribe. Rare Apotropaic marks to front.
Original hand forged wrought iron hinges, thick quarter sawn panels to back, front to back thick quarter sawn base, four carved front panels, thick two plank oak timber top/lid. Beautiful aged lining paper to inside. Historic repairs signifying a well loved and important piece of furniture. Great larger size perfect as a coffee table, end of bed storage or side/sofa table. Fabulous detailing with open grain and deep mellow patina from years of use, this statement piece of furniture looks fabulous from all angles. Circa 1650.
160cm length x 54cm depth x 79cm height
Antique coffers are sought after country pieces of period antique furniture and are one of the earliest forms of furniture on record. The coffer would usually be constructed from planks of solid oak with a hinged lid and be of simple pegged construction or with the old iron clout nails. They will often have a small hinged compartment on the inside for storing candles. Period antique coffers are mainly seen from the 17th and early 18th century and although are very simply made, they are very strong and robust so have stood the test of time. This is why you can see some stunning examples still in good original condition full of lovely charm and character. They were built as dual purpose, storing goods such as bedding or silver and also a surface for sitting on or using as a side table. This example is early with the use of single planks of oak and in good order for age.
Apotropaic or witches’ marks, have been found in various properties throughout the UK—from Wookey Hole Caves in Somerset, to Shakespeare’s birthplace in Stratford-Upon-Avon, to even the Tower of London. Most of the carvings appear in buildings constructed between the 16th and 18th centuries.
The “apotropaic” terminology comes from the Greek term “apotropaios,” meaning “averting evil.” Witches or their evil conjured spirits were thought to attempt to enter homes via doorways, hearths, and windows, and hide in shadows made by the nooks and crannies of the house. It was believed that once they had entered the property, witches and evil spirits would want to attack the inhabitants, or ruin the most valuable possessions of the owner. Tudor proprietors took a proactive approach to the issue, and carved the apotropaic marks near where items of value were stored.
As a genuine antique/vintage product there is wear and use commensurate with age. Some wooden products may have signs of historic woodworm. As a precaution we apply a clear triple action woodworm treatment that also kills wet rot, dry rot and woodworm. Please look at all the images carefully and ask any questions pre purchase as we do not unfortunately offer refunds due to the size and shipping costs of our antiques/items. All our items are available on line at Search & Rescued and other online stores.