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Here, too, Sotheby’s specialist Jeremy Smith felt the trade had more of the running and as elsewhere it was the bottom end of the sale that proved difficult, while the interest concentrated on the better quality untouched goods. A classic example was the Regency mahogany library armchair of c.1820 pictured here. It was in obvious need of re-upholstery, but was especially notable for its distinctive front legs which relate to a design for a seat by Charles Heathcote Tatham first published in his Etchings of Ancient Ornamental Architecture… and seen on a stool sold by Christie’s in 1974 that is now in the Victoria and Albert Museum. At Sotheby’s last month the piece sold to a UK dealer for £3800, getting on for double the estimate.

A piece with age and decorative appeal in its favour was a 3ft 6in (1.03m) high by 2ft 6in (77cm) wide Regency pier cabinet of c.1810 decorated with gilt and black japanned chinoiseries and fitted with two adjustable shelves. Its small size and attractive well-preserved decoration were plus factors, helping it to a double-estimate £2400.