After yesterday’s post looking at the three hands involved in the principal objects from the Savell shop, it seems worthwhile to look at the carvings from the upper rails of their chests. This batch goes in reverse order; the uppermost image is the work attributed to William Savell, the youngest son of William Savell, Sr. Then the middle one is John Savell, the eldest son, who trained the younger William. The lower of the three is one we assign to the immigrant, William Savell, Sr. This carving is somewhat obsucured by numerous paint layers, so some of the detail is barely discernable.
Two answers concerning the comments from the panels – somewhere in the article we mentioned that John Savell was made freeman at such-and-such a date…being admitted as a “freeman” of the town entitles one to various rights, privileges and benefits that a non-freeman is restricted from. Probably responsibilities too.
Concerning the differences in the handling in the carvings; there can indeed be many explanations for it. We were able to see several examples of the work we attribute to both sons, but for the work assigned to William Savell Sr we had only two pieces at the time of publication, and have added only one more since. John’s work, and young William’s were both consistent within themselves. Ditto the old man, although with a smaller sample it’s hard to draw any conclusion. Might be that even had young William trained with his father, (instead of with his brother) he still might have done his carvings with a less than supple curve to his work. That said, he still carves better than me…I blow out the oak between V-tool lines when they are spaced very closely together.