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Pictured here are the two best-sellers from Christie’s and Sotheby’s main English sales of the autumn season, held on November 29 and 30 respectively.

Heading the list in Sotheby’s (20/15/10% buyer’s premium) 182-lot sale of important English furniture at a mid-estimate £400,000 was this pair of George III commodes, above right, in marquetry and gilt brass mounted tulipwood and kingwood.

They are known as The Craven Commodes after William, 6th Baron Craven, by whom they were almost certainly commissioned for his new country house, Benham Park, Berkshire, built between 1774-5, and are thought to have been produced by the celebrated London cabinetmaker Pierre Langlois. The commodes remained in the family until 1965 when they were sold by Craven’s descendant, the 6th Earl of Craven and were with Mallett, the London dealers, in the 1970s.

Best-seller at Christie’s (17.5/10% buyer’s premium) important English furniture sale was this pair of George III ‘French style’ mahogany open armchairs, below right, inspired by designs in Chippendale’s Director. They were one of 36 lots from the collection of the late Sir Emmanuel Kaye that made up a substantial slice of the auctioneers’ 248-lot sale and had been purchased from London dealers Hotspur Ltd in 1977 for £4800. Last month they sold just over top estimate at £175,000.