that this chair was designed for some family of French extraction; but the toes of the front legs are decidedly " Spanish/' as rendered in Flanders.
It was at this period that the "easy chair" commenced to come into vogue, and greater provision was made for the support and comfort of the head and shoulders of the occupant. Backs were constructed higher and of more generous proportion ; and, among other innovations, the form which we now know as the "Windsor" put in an appearance. In this the centre baluster was not at first abandoned; it was supported on each side by simple turned rods or members, the whole being surmounted by a shaped piece, after the manner shown in Fig. 5, Plate IV. Few more serviceable, sensible, or, for the matter of that, comfortable, wooden chair forms have ever been devised; and it is not at all surprising that this type, with its numerous variations, should have remained popular even down to the present time.
With the taste for luxury and refinement steadily growing on every hand, a degree of ease and comfort was demanded greater than that which the woodworker alone could provide; and it was apparent that something further must be done. It is most curious, almost inexplicable indeed, that that something was not done long before. For many a long year, in ^ Italy, Spain, France, Germany, and the Netherlands, the chair maker had found an invaluable coadjutor in the upholsterer, who had done wonders to render his productions kindly and inviting to the body; but, unless seats were imported from abroad, the physical frames of our countrymen and countrywomen had been compelled to extract what comfort they could, by the aid of loose cushions, from the hardest of oak, uncomfortable enough in itself, but rendered far worse by the vigorous ministrations of the carver, with his crude embellishments.
Eventually a change came about; and the English chair maker argued to himself that if " the foreigner" could c<
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