European Decorative Arts and Sculpture
Interior Architecture, possibly from Sutton Scarsdale HallMade in England, Europe
Artist/maker unknown, English
1928-61-2Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Walter C. Janney, 1928
This interior is one of three rooms installed in the Museum said to have come from Sutton Scarsdale Hall, a grand country house in Derbyshire, England. The hall was built in 1724-27 for Nicholas Leake, fourth and last earl of Scarsdale, who hired the architect and master builder Francis Smith of Warwick (1672-1738). Craftsmen from throughout central England and abroad were brought to the site to finish the interiors, which were notable for their elaborate chimneypieces and stucco ceilings.
After the earl's death in 1736, the hall had various owners until it was bought in 1919 by speculators, who sold its interiors at public auction. (Today, the house survives only as an imposing ruin.) Museum Director Fiske Kimball purchased this room, and two others believed to be from Sutton Scarsdale Hall, from the well-known London firm Robersons with the intention of acquiring appropriate settings for the display of the Museum's important John Howard McFadden Collection of English paintings and for collections of English decorative arts. While surviving documents make it impossible to confirm that this interior is from Sutton Scarsdale Hall, the proportions of the room and its fine overmantel carving evoke the style of that elaborately furnished, monumental building, which once rivaled its great neighbors Chatsworth and Hardwick Hall.
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