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Austin, Cornelius snr (1660-1704)

Austin, Cornelius snr, Cambridge, joiner (c. 1660–1704). Cornelius Austin is better known for the fixed joinery work that is found in many of the Cambridge colleges such as King's Chapel, Emmanuel Chapel and the Wren Library at Trinity. He was employed regularly by St John's College from 1682, mainly for general joinery work but supplied such diverse articles as a candlebox (1697) to ‘a medall case for ye Library £49. 2,’ (1701). Most furniture supplied by him appears to have been part of the contract for the building or rooms he was employed in, as is the case of the Library at Emmanuel College where in 1679, Austin was employed to fit up wainscoting, supply new bookcases and the furnishings of eight tables and sixteen joyned stools. At least a dozen of the stools are still in use in the New Library. From the details given in the payments it is clear that he employed a small workforce. His name appears in the records of the parish of All Saints, although from 1670 he owned a large inn called ‘The Cardinal's Hat’ or ‘Cap’ in Trumpington St. [Archives of St John's College; Willis & Clark, The Architectural History of the University of Cambridge; All Saints’ parish records, Cambs. RO, P20/8/1] R.W.

The original entry from Dictionary of English Furniture Makers, 1660-1840 can be found at British History Online.