Art News

Chairs from Taunton Castle, Somerset, Used During the Bloody Assizes to Sell at Bonhams

LONDON.- A set of six Charles II chairs believed to have been used in the court room of Judge Jeffreys during the Bloody Assize at Taunton Castle, Somerset, in 1685, is to be sold at Bonhams’ Fine English Furniture and Works of Art sale on 3 November 2010. The set has attracted a pre-sale estimate of £10,000 – 15,000. Jeffreys became known as ‘the hanging judge’ for the part he played in the Bloody Assizes, the series of trials that took place in the aftermath of the Battle of Sedgemoor and put an end to the Monmouth Rebellion. He was imprisoned after the Revolution of 1688 in the Tower of London, where he died one year later. Taunton Castle was acquired by the Somerset Archaeological Society in 1873 and the chairs were either removed or sold. They remained in the Taunton area until shortly after the Second World War when they were purchased by R. T. Gwynn and brought to London. The whereabouts of the remai