Thomas Chippendale (Thomas Chippendale)

Thomas Chippendale

Cabinetmaker. Born in Otley, Yorkshire, England, the son of Thomas Chippendale I, a Worcester cabinetmaker and wood-carver of note. By 1727 the Chippendales had moved to London where they opened a furniture workshop. At the end of 1749 the younger Chippendale established himself in Conduit Street with partner, upholsterer James Rannie. The following year, he became the first cabinet-maker to publish a book of his designs, ‘Gentleman and Cabinet Maker’s Director.’ In 1760 he was elected a member of the Society of Arts. His designs introduced the cabriole leg; the claw and ball foot; the straight, square, early Georgian leg; the carved latticework Chinese leg; the pseudo-Chinese leg; the fretwork leg; the rococo leg with the curled or hoofed foot; and the spade foot to English furniture. Chippendale accepted commissions from the Duke of Atholl; Henry, Earl of Pembroke; Sir Roland Winn; Sir Edward Knatchbull; David Garrick; Sir Gilbert Heathcote; William Constable; and George Wyndham, Earl of Egremont to name a few. His work furnished some of the greatest houses in Britain. So pervasive was his influence that Chippendale is often indiscriminately applied to mid-18th century furniture as a whole. As the Chippendale firm became successful, more work was carried out by trained staff than was by Chippendale himself making verifiable Thomas Chippendale pieces very rare. After his death at 61, the firm was run by his son, Thomas III. A sculpted figure of Chippendale is a part of the facade of the Victoria and Albert Museum, London; and a statue and memorial plaque to Chippendale outside the Prince Henry Grammar School in Manor Square, in Otley. (bio by: Iola)


  • June, 16, 1718
  • England


  • November, 11, 1779
  • England


  • St Martin-in-the-Fields Churchyard
  • England

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