The inventory of Gole’s workshop in the rue I’Arbre – Sec lists an important stock: about two hundred pieces of furniture are described, valued at approximately
11.0 livres. Most were complete and ready for sale, while fifteen were still in the process of construction.
Of the various types of furniture itemized, the table was the most widely represented. Forty-four tables are listed, often together with a pair of matching gu£ri – dons (17 pairs), mostly in walnut (noyerde Grenoble). The most luxurious of them, valued at between 50 to 200 livres each, were embellished with floral marquetry. They were supported on console legs or by caryatids in carved and gilded wood, less frequently on fluted columnar or square tapered legs. A number of tables were veneered in burr olivewood, more rarely in cedar or ebonized wood. Desks, equally numerous in the inventory (23). were obviously at the height of fashion as almost all the pieces in the process of construction were actually desks. The brevity of the descriptions does not give a clear idea of these pieces, but at least two were of the type called ’brisks’, and when the feet are described they are usually ‘termes dores’. or ‘gaines domes’ or columns’. They are valued at between 40 and 220 livres each. Of cabinets, a type of furniture which was later to pass out of fashion, there are still thirty examples mentioned in Gole’s inventory, most of them ‘en armoires’. that is. the upper section forming a cabinet while the lower has two hinged doors. Most of these pieces were in walnut from Grenoble or ‘bois d’Allemagne’. i. e. in burr – walnut. or again in ebony. Two cabinets veneered in tortoiseshell are mentioned, one ‘decorated with flowers’ and the other ’with gilt figures’ as well as a single cabinet in pietra-dura, deemed old-fashioned and given a low valuation. The numerous pieces of hard – stone. columns and pilasters mentioned at the beginning of the inventory indicate that Gole had made cabinets in pietra-dura as had Gucci and Oppenordt. including cabinets decorated with flowers and fruit in relief. Judging from the 1684 inventory. Gole very seldom used marquetry in metal. Only six pieces using this technique are listed, and these are the most expensive pieces in the inventory, the marquetry composed only of brass and pewter, sometimes with ebony (and not combined with tortoiseshell in Boulle’s style).
— One small cabinet with marquetry of engraved brass and pewter and enriched with a quantity of gilt-bronze ornaments, together with a base. 800L
— A large table with marquetry of engraved brass and pewter with a carved gilded and silvered base: with 2 gu^ridons. 440L
— A small bureau in marquetry of brass and pewter.
length 2 pieds 8 jjouces. supported on consoles in the form of gilt terms and mouldings also gilded. 220L
— An ecritoire and a casket with brass and pewter marquetry on an ebony ground with one small shelf in kingwood. 50L
— One serre-papiers in brass and pewter marquetry on an ebony ground. 40L
— One cabinet ‘en armoire’ with ornamentation and ebony on a pewter ground.
The stocks of wood in Gole’s workshop consisted predominantly of ebony, but also of palisander, of’lie de vin’ (amaranth?) and bois jaune. Papers detailed at the end of the inventory give a list of Gole’s creditors, among whom was the gilder Chamin and the London cabinet-maker Jansen, who sold Gole 400 livres of ‘glue and merchandise’ There is a list of Gole’s assistants (Jean Houwar. Fran^ois-Nicolas Nathey. Pierre Doyenne. Nicolas Delahaye. Pierre Masme. Jacquin. carver. Desessars. lacquerer and Jocob. apprentice), as well as a list of his clients, among whom were the Princess of Mecklenburg, the Princess of Baden. Louise de Savoie (who owed 1.200 livres in 1667) and. above all. Marie de Bourbon. Princesse de Carignan who owed him 7.265 livres in 1670.
It is difficult to define Gole’s style, judging from the few pieces so far identified by Lunsingh Scheurlecr to date. Nevertheless, certain characteristics can be observed. On the edges of tables or cabinets are two types of borders. One comprises laurel garlands with alternate leaves in ivory and palisander with small central rosettes in ivory; this is the more common (5). The other is a black-and-white border imitating a galloon of rounded festoons, a motif certainly originating from upholstery. Columnar legs with capitals and astragals were frequently employed by Gole. but also found on furniture by other Flemish and Parisian ebe – nistes of the same period. Floral marquetry, as far as may be judged from one piece of furniture dating from around 1662 (1). does not display the same realistic effects of depth and precision as is to be found on Boulle’s furniture between the years 1680 and
1700. It represents the first stages in the development of floral marquetry where efforts were made to reproduce the linear yet colourful effects of marquetry in pietra-dura, using grounds of ebony or ivory to imitate the white or black marble found on Florentine furniture.
EXCERPT PROM THE INVENTORY TAKEN АП ЕК THE DEATH Of PIERRE COLE ON 10 JANUARY 1685 (AKCII. NAT. MIN. CENT..
The following arc the tods, wood, glues, works completed агкі those still incomplete, priced by the aforesaid Jean, assistant to Jean Thierry, master cWniste. living in the rue <lu Temple and Cfur (lampe, also master cbtfniste living in the same street
— Firstly, in the courtyard, there is a quantity of 6.164 livres of ebony priced at 151. the hundred, altogether 9241.
— Item, a quantity of 306 livres of palisander wood priced at 10L the hundred, altogether 30L 12s
— 29 livres of calambour priced at Os the livre. altogether 8L 14s
— 31 livres of boisd’anis, priced at Is the livre. 61. 4s
— 187 livres of bois jaunc. priced at 71. the hundred.
— 36 livres of bois de cane, priced at 5s the livre. 9L
— 298 livres of lie de vin. priced at 501. the hundred 1491.
— 13 livres of bois violet. priced at 101. the hundred. 5L 5s
— 1.145 livres of violet ebony, priced at 101. the hundred 1141.
— 66 livres of grenaille prices! at 2s the livre. 6L 12s
— 116 livres of orangewood. priced at 10І. the hundred 1I4L
— 37 livres ol cedarwood. priced at 2s the livre. 3L 14s
— 672 livres of all kinds of off – cuts priced at 3L the hundred. 201.3s
— 5 livres of tortoiseshell.
estimated at 100s the livre. 251.
— 23 livres of ivory cut into sheets, priced at 30s the livre 341. 10$
The following items were found in the closet next to the kitchen:
— Various types of sawn wood of different colours, priced altogether a: 4001.
— 14 livres of glue 541.
— 11 livres of fish glue. 17L 5s
— 7 dozen blades for jointing planes as well as planes 241.
— 12 dozen braces and bits large and small. 100s
— 72 moulding blades and a work bench. 22L
— 1 small stand with tools. 11L
— 2 amethyst columns 66L
— 8 columns of Spanish brocatelle I marble]. 241.
— 2 further columns of Spanish brocatellc. 1II.
— 2 columns of white alabaster
— 2 further grey alabaster columns. 91.
— 4 small white alabaster columns. 11L
— 2 columns of ‘fleuri de Sidle’
I marble). 33L
— 2 pilasters in ‘fleuri de Stale’
— 12 classical columns in lapis lazuli 6L
— 19 pieces of stone for drawer fronts of fruits and flowers in inlaid pietra-dura, and the door of the central compartment of a cabinet. 400L
— 7 pieces of Spanish brocatellc both small and large, such as are used in pilasters. 8L
— Various pieces of amethyst gathered together am! various pieces of jasper. 12L
— Various pieces of lapis. 41.
In the shop:
— Item. 10 vices and 6 marquetry saws, priced together 20L
11 Tortoiseshell cabinet with flowers, priced 90L
2) Item, one cabinet in grey yew wood. 601.
3) One cabinet en armoirc, with decorations am! ebony on a pewter ground, SOL
41 One cupboard for books in four-coloured marquetry 66/.
5| One bureau in Grenoble walnut of 3 pieds 8 polices. 60L 6| 10 tables in (irenoble
walnut, one gilt, altogether 441.
71 One bureau of Grenoble walnut 3’/.- pieds long with drawers down to the feet 60/.
8) One small table desk 221.
9) One table and 2 guendons in solid walnut, altogether 161.
10) One gradin decorated with cedar and ebony marquetry with one small walnut estudiolc with 4 drawers. 22L
11) One small cedarwood table priced 9L
12) One solid walnut bookcase. 11L
13) One bois violet bureau with gilded terms. 501.
14) Another bois violet bureau with its gradin on twisted columns. 70L
15) A small bureau in cedarwood with drawers bander! in olivewood. 331.
16) One small table desk in cedarwood /5/.
17) One bureau bnse with columns. 6OL
18) 3 games tables covered in green serge, altogether 121.
19) One carved table pedestal 331.
20| (Comprising one cabinet-
shaped casket in |?) with 2 ecritoires with marquetry and 2 others ‘fa<;on de la chine’. One small cabinet with marquetry with 4 drawers with one small square of bois violet, altogether 331.
211 ()nc small reliquary with
four columns decorated with looking glass. 15/.
22) 5 walnut shelves with one in cedarwood and one old tabletop with marquetry on ivory ground. 251.
23) 2 small walnut folding tables, together 36L
24) 3 walnut reading-stands
ami 2 small round tabletops, together 9L
25) (Tne table decoratal with flowers on an ebony ground with its wooden frame on the top and also gneridons of the same type. 551.’
26) ( >ne revolving stand in oak ami 4 turning shelves. 201.
27) (>nc small partition with glass frame and 2 further frames, also of glass. 201.
28) One small lacquered mirror with an ebony frame. 31.
In the room above the shop:
29) One small cabinet with marquetry of engraved brass ami pewter and embellished with a quantity of ornaments of gilt bronze together with the base S00L
30) < )ne large armoirc in walnut with landscape’s 4001.
31) One walnut armoire with 2 doors and 2 small armoires ami a stand, altogether 751.
32) One walnut armoire with 4 panelled doors. 751.
33) One armoire in handsome Grenoble walnut with 4 doors 801.
34) < )nc tortoiseshell cabinet with gilt figures 1501.
35) <)nc cbonized cabinet with allegories and ornaments in tortoiseshell and accom|>anied by a stand. 1001.
36) 3 tables anil 2 pairs of guendons in Grenoble walnut. 821.
371 One table and 2 gucridons in solid walnut. I6L
38) One large table with marquetry in engraved brass and pewter and with one carved pedestal, gilt ami silvered, with 2 gucridons. 4401.
39) One bureau worked with flowers overall with gilt straight legs. 200L
40) One small bureau with marquetry in brass and pewter.
2 pieds 8 pouccs long, mounted on drawers, with gilt console – shaped legs with mouldings 220/.
41) One table decorated with flowers amongst festoons, mounted on square terms also veneered with flowers with gilt Ionic capitals am! a pair of guendons in the same manner, together 200L
42) Another table decorated with flowers. 3 pieds long, with fluted wooden columns ami
matching gucndons. in all 110L
43) One table in burr – olivewood with columns and similar gueridons. 45L
44) One small table in burr – olivewood in the shape of a bureau decorated with bands of bois violet. 25L
45) One prie-dicu in Grenoble walnut with bands of ebony. 30L 46| One bureau without a top in pear-wood ebonized and decorated with silver ornaments. 55L
47) One table with flowers with a rim of pewter and a foot carved and gilt h console, and matching gueridons 1501.
48) < )nc table with flowers mounted on a base of console – shaped gilt figures and 2 matching gulridons. I65L
49) Another table with flowers and with garlands mounted on square legs veneered with flowers and two matching gufridons 13SL
50) 2 large gilt gulrtdons 5 pieds high sup|x>rted by 2 putti. 100L
51) 2 more smaller gilt gucndons supported by term- shaped figures. 45L
52) 2 tables "i la dauphine’. ebonized. 20L
53) One table with panels of flowers with wooden structure for upper and lower part. 2 similar gucndons, unmounted 55/.
54) One ikrritoirc and one box with marquetry in brass and pewter on ebony ground with one small shelf in kingwood. 50L
In the room on the second floor next to the kitchen
55) One small bureau in calambour with pewter fillets.
56) One large ebony cabinet en armoire priced 150L
57) One large box in bois d’Allemagne I5L
58) One strong box in bois d’Allemagne embellished with iron bands mounted on a foot 100L
59) One coffre de nuit 2 pied* 15 pouces in length decorated in marquetry of brass and pewter on 6 small gilt putti and decorated with gilt bronze lambrequins. 220L
60) One cabinet en armoire with four doors in Grenoble walnut. 150L
611 One old cabinet with inlaid hardstoncs on an ebony ground. 30L
62) One table in solid walnut without its gu^ridon. 16L 63J One small table desk in burr-olivewood. 25L 641 One old table in bois d’Allemagne with handles at each end. on an ebonized base 15L
65) One gradin with flowers and ornamented with bands of pewter 22L
66) One cabinet en armoire in Grenoble walnut with pilasters. 90L
67) Two small cabinets en armoire with two estudioles in bois d’Allemagne. incomplete, altogether 50L
68) One serre-papiers in brass and pewter marquetry on an ebony ground. 401.
69) One bureau brivj veneered in bois violet. 3 pieds 5 pouces in length, on columns, priced 60L
70) One old table base composed of carved blackamoors. 40L
71J Various pieces of carving with a carved panel. 301.
72) 3 candlesticks carved, altogether 15L
73) One night chest in Grenoble walnut 24L
741 2 tables and a pair of gucridons in Grenoble walnut.
75) One table in burr – olivewood with its gutfridons.
76| One table with festoons of flowers on gilt consoles with its matching gueridons 165L
77) Another, different table on fluted columns, bases and gilt capitals with matching gucridons. 110L
78) 2 4critoires with marquetry of ebony on a pewter ground Ж
79) One round table covered in green serge with one small table & la dauphine ebonized. together
In the little side chamber where the deceased died
80) One bureau in bois d’Allemagne of 31/.- pieds and with 5 drawers. 401.
81) One estudiole with its table in Grenoble walnut. 25L
82) Various pieces of marquetry of brass and jxrwter and ebony, altogether 66L
83) One old table en armoire in walnut 12L
841 One bookcase with four – coloured marquetry on a white ground. 601.
85) One old bookcase fa^on de la Chine. 12L
In the upper shop where the employees worked:
— 12 work-benches together with their tools both good and mediocre, altogether I30L
— 4 saws for sawing ebony and a ripping saw. other saws without handles, altogether 15L
— 16 saws, both hand and marquetry. 16L
— 4 saws. 15L
— 4 pots of glue and 2 pots of ebonizing fluid, one grill and two whetstones. 18L
— 22 screw presses, altogether 22L
In a loft above the shop:
— A number of beams of timber 110L
— One large press. 3L
86) One bureau with flowers 6 pieds long, incomplete. 230L
87) Another bureau with flowers. 3 pieds 9 pouces in length. 1501.
88) One cabinet en armoire. 3 pieds 9 pouces in length 501.
89) 3 small bureaux with marquetry of 3 colours incomplete. 100L
90) One bureau. 5 pieds in length, the veneering started, that is the ebony cut and the white wood cut out for 2 other bureaux similar, altogether 60L
91) 4 tabletops in floral veneer, altogether 300L Tortoiseshell and pewter prepared 63L
92) 3 games of raffle begun in walnut, altogether 201.
93) 15 table legs with their bases with 6 tops. 66L
94) The carcase of a large armoire in oak with 6 guertdon tops altogether 30L
95) 3 sides of bureaux with one small estudiole. 2 sides of a small table & la dauphine. one box with its lock, altogether 50L
Here follow the bronze, metals and lead:
— 29 livres and a half of sheets of bronze, engraved, priced at 15s the livre. altogether 22L