Portuguese Colonial Ebony Prie-Dieu chairsMid 19th century
An exceptional pair of Portuguese colonial prie-Dieu chairs or prayer chairs, made in ebony with a caned seat. The back with a solid ebony rectangular block in the middle surrounden by a carved and pierced floral design while the uprights of the back are relief carved with a floral design.
The chairs feature a nicely shaped crest rail. The front and side seat reals are also relief carved with a floral design. The front legs are turned and end in a rounded peg foot, the rear legs of square section are raked. Prie-Dieu chairs were designed specifically for prayer.
The low seat was meant to be used for kneeling, and the top rail which was usually upholstered, as an elbow rest or Bible support. This form was current in the mid 19th century. This example preserves the low seat and high back which is open and carved rather than upholstered.
The chairs are in excellent condition and have been lovingly restored and finished to its former glory using a traditional form of French polishing and waxing. Ebony (Diospyrus Ebenum) is a black wood of very close grain and heavy in weight.
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Portuguese colonial India
H: 102 cm SH: 35 cm W: 48 cm D: 48cm
H: 40" SH: 14" W: 19" D: 19"