An important renaissance oak tester bed
Danish, mid 17th century
Height 83", width 54", length 88" (inside length 71")
The headboard is inscribed "Anno 1646" at the top and has the letters "KIDN" within a cartouche at the bottom.
Few renaissance beds equal this one in terms of its elaborate carving and its overall beauty in design. Foremost among its outstanding features are the front posts in the form of cherubs. The posts of nearly all beds of the period contain only geometric shapes; human-type figures are a more costly feature and rare. The canopy, with its full-relief cherub masks mounted on brackets, with clusters of grape vines in between them, is a feature especially desirable. The elaborately-carved headboard shows a saint in the middle section kneeling before an open book and an angel. The foot board is also well designed, containing two classical figures each within an architectural niche on each side of a cherub. There are 27 human/cherub figures in all surrounded by a large quantity of scrolling foliage and geometrical shapes.
Condition: The bed was extended an additional 2.5" a long time ago, at which time the original side rails must have been removed. The current side rails are custom-built replacements made from antique oak matching the design of the lower headboard. The remaining parts are basically all original except for two of the cherub masks on the canopy, some boards in the uncarved lower section of the headboard, and the molding on the feet. Minor chips and imperfections consistent with age.