c1865 King-size Norman Marriage bed.
This genuinely magnificent oak bed comes a village 20km NE of Le Harvre in the Pays de Caux. Typically all marriages were celebrated with a marriage armoire, often richly decorated and intended for public display at the wedding party. Marriage beds were private commissions for the wealthiest of farming families and are rare from any region. We've had less than five first rate examples in over 35 years of collecting. This one is as good as they get. They were often uniquely light blonde in colour (purity?). When dismantled for cleaning the original colour behind the cartouche was still bleached or very blonde oak. After 150 years of open smutty fires the piece was dull and darkened. A fortnight of cleaning (near archaeological) has brought the piece back to pretty much what the makers intended. The photos here were taken on a dull rainy day in a Breton barn with no lighting and don't do it justice. The details are typical of the Pays de Caux, marguerites, roses, vines with fruit and a superbly rendered pair of doves kissing/feeding each other. The central cartouche on the headboard is a tour de force. I knew Georges Regnault possibly the last Norman master sculptor. He could have decorated this bed in perhaps 2-3 months when at his best. But, it would have taken him 30 years to learn how to complete it in only 2-3 weeks! Treat someone you love to it and take care of them both.
Takes a standard 150 cm x 200 cm mattress
Newly fitted with wooden slats and centre bar
Bed 153 cm wide (177 cm including cornice) 155 cm tall
Foot board 94 cm tall