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A Classical / Federal / Sheraton Carved Carved Mahogany Phyfe Sofa with Turned-in Arms , New York, c.1810


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This is the best of the Phyfe line of sofas, with the sought-after pronounced turned-in arm.  A virtually identical example is illustrated in Albert Sack’s New Fine points of Furniture: Early American (see item 253, scanned below).  Here, Albert calls this a “Masterpiece”.  The reasons are obvious when one sees how beautifully the crest is carved with classical motifs and proportionally balanced with three panels.   The sides of the couch undulate out and then in again, giving a turned-in, sophisticated look.  The arms are then supported by bulbous reeded posts above acanthus carving, all of which are supported by reeded legs.   This is the type of couch you’d see in the Diplomatic Reception Rooms, or any formal room of fine stature.  There are no repairs or alterations or breaks, and the upholstery has been recently reupholstered with a down cushion on a traditional webbing foundation. 

Height: 35 1/2 in.  Seat Height: 20 in.
Depth: 31 in.  Length: 77 in.
$30,000
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