John Hodson was one of the lesser-known 18th century London cabinet-makers. He is recorded as working over a 77-year period, between 1709 and 1786. Following a nine-year apprenticeship with Thomas Arne in London, England, he was admitted freeman in 1718. He succeeded Thomas Hodson, probably a relative, as head of the ‘Hodson’s Looking Glass and Cabinet Warehouse’ business in Frith Street in Soho, London.

In 1738, Hodson supplied furniture to the Duke of Atholl at Blair Castle in Scotland, where documentation survives. The items he supplied to Blair Castle include a tripod table, a mahogany claw table with galleried top, a fine carved and painted side table and a wine cooler. The wine cooler can be identified and remains at Blair Castle. 

This wine cooler, previously in the Neuhoff collection, corresponds closely in design to the Blair Castle wine cooler, supporting the attribution to Hodson.

Note: The brass liner is of later date.

Literature: J. Lee, ‘Lion claw wine coolers’, Apollo, May 1952, p. 133, fig. 1.
Percy Macquoid and Ralph Edwards, The Dictionary of English Furniture, revised edition, 1954, vol. III, p. 372, fig. 2.
Anthony Coleridge, ‘John Hodson and some cabinet-makers at Blair Castle’, Connoisseur, April 1962, p. 225, fig. 4.
Christie’s, ‘Childwick Bury, St. Albans, Hertfordshire: Part I, Objects of art, Fine French Furniture, Important English Furniture’, sale catalogue, 15 May 1978, p. 69, lot 84.
Geoffrey Beard and Christopher Gilbert, The Dictionary of English Furniture Makers 1660-1840, 1986, p. 439.
Robin Butler and Gillian Walking, The Book of Wine Antiques, 1986, p. 119, col. pl. 22.
Christie’s, New York, ‘Important English Furniture and Objects of Art’, sale catalogue, 17 October 1997, pp. 86-7, lot 395.
Lanto Synge, Mallett Millennium, 1999, p. 109, illus. 113.
Christie’s, New York, ‘500 Years Decorative Arts’, sale catalogue, 15 April 2011, lot 478.

Sotheby’s, New York, ‘Important English Furniture and Decorations, The Jerome C. Neuhoff Collection’, sale catalogue, 25 January 1986, lot 194.

  • Provenance

    Hotspur Ltd., London, England.
    Collection of Jerome C. Neuhoff, New York, USA.
    Private collection, New York, USA.


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