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The Taunton auctioneers had estimated this 7ft 4in by 4ft 1in (2.24 x 1.24m) Victorian breakfront open bookcase, right, at £300-500 but a bidding battle ended with it going to an Italian dealer at £3400.

Other furniture included a Regency mahogany work table with crossbanded top at £1900 and a late 18th century Dutch walnut and marquetry chest-on-chest at £1650.

The talking point at Patrick Cheyne’s Cheshire sale, which was a set of three walnut dining chairs which though neglected were fresh to the market state having been being housed for years in a small cottage near Knutsford. Furthermore, their high backs with carved snail scroll decoration to the cresting boards, vase-shaped splats, wide shaped loose drop-in seats and cabriole legs with leaf carved chocks and claw and ball feet, all made a George II attribution seemed reasonable.
However, the intensely open pierced interlaced decoration to the splats, the lack of patination or wear to the feet and their comparatively light weight were causes for doubt and the auctioneers decided to settle for a catalogue description of “George II style” and gave the chairs an estimate of £300-500.

The trade seemed to disagree with the cataloguing and the chairs were taken by a Harrogate dealer at £4000.

Rather more predictable was the reaction to the day’s best seller, a Sheraton-style bowfronted sideboard. Dating from around 1830, it was a London trade buy at £4700.
Other notables in the sale included an 18th century stick barometer inscribed Bapt.Rochete & Co. fecit which brought £1550 and a painted dial eight-day oak longcase inscribed Jas Squire, Penrith which took £1200.