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Throne chair

  • Place of origin:

    Lucknow (made)

  • Date:

    ca. 1820 (made)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Wood, with gilt brass and gilt gesso mounts, painted decoration and later blue velvet upholstery

  • Credit Line:

    Given by the 5th Earl Amherst of Arracan

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    On display in the Scottish Design Galleries, V&A Dundee

This chair is a rare surviving example of palace furniture from Lucknow in northern India. It was a gift from Ghazi-ud-din Haidar, Nawab and King of Oudh (ruled 1814 to 1827), to Lord Amherst, Governor-General of India. The nawab probably gave it to Amherst during the latter's visit to Lucknow in 1827. The Scottish artist Robert Home almost certainly designed this chair. He was court painter at Lucknow, where he devised regalia as well as royal carriages, howdahs, barges and palace furnishings. These followed European fashions but, like this chair, they often carried the twin-fish badge of the rulers of Lucknow.

Physical description

Throne chair based on a European prototype of the Egyptian revival, armchair of wood, with gilt brass and gilt gesso mounts with tapering fluted legs with claw feet; later blue velvet upholstered seat. Three carved fish support each of the arms, and seat back is supported by a pair of fish on either side of a dagger. Decorated with gilt metal mounts in the form of foliate motifs, putti and swans, and rosettes. Seat rail and back have painted decoration of scolling foliage and rosettes. Seat cushion, arm cushions and back pad of dark blue with gold trim.

Place of Origin

Lucknow (made)


ca. 1820 (made)

Materials and Techniques

Wood, with gilt brass and gilt gesso mounts, painted decoration and later blue velvet upholstery


Width: 61 cm, Depth: 65.5 cm, Height: 90 cm

Descriptive line

Throne chair; Lucknow, under European influence, ca.1820

Bibliographic References (Citation, Note/Abstract, NAL no)

Jaffer, Amin Furniture from British India and Ceylon: A Catalogue of the Collections in the Victoria and Albert Museum and the Peabody Essex Museum. London : V&A Publications, 2001. 416 p., ill. ISBN 1851773185, p.302-3. pl.122.
Plate 164, page 196.
Jackson, Anna and Jaffer, Amin (eds), with Deepika Ahlawat. Maharaja : the splendour of India's royal courts. London, V&A Publishing, 2009. ISBN.9781851775736 (hbk.), ISBN.1851775730 (hbk.).
pps. 244-245
Jackson, Anna and Ji Wei (eds.) with Rosemary Crill, Ainsley M. Cameron and Nicholas Barnard, compiled by the Palace Museum, translated by Yuan Hong, Qi Yue and Liu Ran. The Splendour of India' Royal Courts : Collection of the Victoria and Albert Museum. Beijing: the Forbidden City Publishing House, 2013. Text in English and Chinese. ISBN 9787513403917.
Luxury goods from India : the art of the Indian cabinet maker / Amin Jaffer. London: V&A Publications, 2002 Number: 1851773819


Ph_survey; Furniture


South & South East Asia Collection

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