Our Collection

British Colonial Ebony Sofa

Mid 19th century

A magnificent and rare antique British colonial sofa in ebony with an arched serpentine crest rail centered by a floral carving. The reeded frame has scrolled arms that display finely carved roundels at the ends; a motif which is repeated above the legs. The seat and back have been recently hand re-caned in a pattern typical to the colonial style. The four reeded, sabre legs terminate in a brass paw foot on castor.

The sofa is in good condition and has been lovingly restored and finished to its former glory using a traditional form of French polishing and waxing.

Ebony has long been prized for its dense hardness, which lends itself for beautiful carving and a smooth finish after being polished. It is considered the aristocrat of hardwoods and is native to southern India and Sri Lanka. Ebony has always been a luxury wood and was so popular in 17th century France, that ‘ebenistes’ is still the French word for cabinet maker. Furniture pieces of lesser woods were often ‘ebonized’ (painted black) to make them look as if made of ebony.

Read more about tropical hardwoods in our blog here.

This sofa has been sold. Please keep checking our website as we may add a similar piece.


Malabar coast
British colonial India
H: 90 cm W: 245 cm D: 65 cm Seat H: 44 cm
H: 35” W: 92” D: 25½” Seat H: 17½”

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