Circa 1800 French Walnut Carving of a Knight


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This exquisite Circa 1800 French walnut knight is a gem of a carving. The numerous plumbs called “panaches” in the helmet represented a certain status and wealth of a knight and certain colors represented a particularly important family. The helmet has good detail to the breathing holes, the face of the knight with his voluptuous mustache and gazing eyes has a certain thoughtfulness. His right hand is resting on his right cheek in a contemplating pose that perhaps suggests a morning battle or a missed loved one. The left hand is holding a mighty medieval-style iron sword, the sword starts at the neckline and continues downward to about a quarter-inch from the bottom of the bass where the knight rest, this suggests that this woodcarver was exceptional in his craftmanship. Detail was paid to the shoulder pads (pauldrons), elbow pads (couters), knee pads (poleyns), the knight skirt (fauld and tasset), and belt buckles. The folds in the swag drape across his body all the way down to his hip in a delightful bow tie design. With a gentle upright pose to the left, the shin guards (greaves) and feet (sabatons) display gracefulness. The knight is placed in an alcove formed by an arched niche that rests on a serpentine frontal form base atop a Corinthian column capital having classical acanthus leaves and scrolls.

Additional information

Weight 20 lbs
Dimensions L 7 x W 14.5 x H 38 in
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Year / Century


Place of Origin





A bit of wear around the top and sides of the arched niche due to woodworm. The woodworm has been professionally eradicated. The knight figure and Corinthian column capital are in good condition with a lovely patina. There is a minuscule chip on the visor of the helmet. The serpentine frontal base on which the figure stands appears to have been added later. Although there are scratches and nicks on the wood, no parts are missing. We will be happy to provide additional close-up images upon request.

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