Boulle Lewis Walpole

Fulfilling his intention to recreate a piece of the eighteenth century in his Farmington house, W. S. Lewis assembled a number of significant works of art and other objects from Strawberry Hill, Walpole’s “little Gothic castle” in Twickenham.

These items demonstrate Walpole’s own wide-ranging collecting interests as well as his adaptation of Gothic elements for the interior decoration of Strawberry Hill. Foremost among these objects are four of the eight Gothic chairs designed by Richard Bentley in 1755 for Walpole’s Great Parlour, and the Beauclerk Cabinet, designed and built by Edward Edwards in 1784 to display drawings and designs by Walpole’s friend Lady Diana Beauclerk, an amateur artist whom he greatly admired. Several of her drawings, as well as designs for Wedgwood, are set into the cabinet’s door and walls.

Also at Farmington are two of the dozen settees that graced Strawberry Hill’s Long Gallery, and a lantern that in Walpole’s day shed “the most venerable gloomth” on his staircase. The Library’s Strawberry Hill collection also includes a Boulle coffer on stand, several examples of stained glass, the gold snuffbox left to Walpole by Mme du Deffand, and one of his cribbage boards.