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Hunt, Phillip (1662-1710)

Hunt, Phillip

London; cabinet maker, looking glass maker and marqueteur (fl.1662-1710)

Phillip Hunt was the son of a yeoman in Bletchingley, Surrey. On 2 August 1662 he was apprenticed through the Joiners' Company to John Burrowes, a looking-glass and cabinet maker at ‘Ye Looking Glass’ Cornhill, known for supplying furniture to Charles II, members of the nobility and City officials.

By 1670 he had established his own business in Butlers Ally, Cripplegate Without, when he bound his first apprentice through the Joiners' Company. He was married two years later to Elizabeth and the couple had two children, John and Elizabeth. He apparently ran a busy workshop because over the following twenty-nine years he indentured eleven more apprentices, all the sons of either Citizens of London or tradesmen and yeoman from English towns and villages. One of these apprentices was his son

By 1692 he was a resident of St. Paul's Churchyard at the sign of 'Ye Looking Glas & Cabenet', living with his wife and two children. He remained in the churchyard until his death in 1710 and was buried in the parish church, St. Faith under St Paul's. 

trade card
Copyright (Attribution/Credit)
British Museum

The trade card of Phillip Hunt of St Paul's Churchyard, c. 1692 [Heal, 28.104]. © The Trustees of the British Museum

As was common, Hunt advertised his fashionable stock of furniture on his trade card: cabinets, looking glasses, tables, stands, scrutores and chests of drawers. However, what is most remarkable about this trade card are his 'Curious inlaid Figures for any worke made and sold by Phillip Hunt'. Apparently he was making and selling marquetry and supplying it commercially to the trade. This is the first documentary evidence of this practice, however, he was not alone; other cabinet makers like Jasper Bream were most likely also operating in the same way. 

By Laurie Lindey

Sources: GL, MS 8052/1, f. 96; LMA, London Hearth Tax, St Giles (without) Cripplegate, Butlers Alley, 1670; LMA, London marriage records, Allhallows, London Wall, 30 July 1672; LMA, London Land Tax, Farringdon Within, 1692-1709; Glass, London Inhabitants Within the Walls, 1695, p. 160; LMA London burial records, P69/AUG/A/006/MS08884, 11 May 1710; Lindey, The London Furniture Trade, 1640 - 1720 (unpublished PhD thesis), Institute of Historical Research, University of London (2016), pp, 171-2, 224 & 238.