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Pascall, James & Ann (1697-1747)

Pascall, James & Ann

at ‘The Golden Head’, Long Acre, London; carvers, gilders and picture frame makers (b. c.1697-d. 1746/7)

James Pascall was born about 1697 and of Huguenot descent. He married twice, first to Ann Goudouin in 1724 and then to Ann Smith in 1726.

The first recorded work by Pascal is witnessed by a payment of £10 10s to ‘James Pascal, Frame maker’, 7 April 1733 in Sir Richard Hoare's private account at Hoare's bank, while the Stourhead papers provide an entry on 24 June 1743; ‘Mr Pascall the carver and gilder in full £30’.

An advertisement in the Daily Post, 21 February 1738 announced the publication of ‘Gribelin's Engravings of Raphael Cartoons, Ceiling of the Banqueting House, etc. A Book of Ornament of Twelve Leaves, invented and engrav'd by him: useful to all Learners and Lovers of Drawings. Mr Pascall, Picture Frame-maker, at the Golden Head, over against Hanover Street in Long Acre‘.

The Bedford Estate papers include a survey of the Long Acre estate [London Metropolitan Archive (LMA), E/BER/ CG/L/104] which show James Pascall, carver, to have occupied two houses in Long Acre and Bow Street. The survey includes a diagram of one of these houses showing Pascall's workshop in the centre, with an open yard underneath.

James Pascall died in 1746–47 and his widow Ann carried on the business, being paid small amounts by the Hoare family for picture framing and gilding between June 1747 and February 1754.

The firm's only major documented commission concerns furnishing the newly decorated gallery at Temple Newsam, Yorkshire for Henry 7th Viscount Irwin in 1745–47. Pascall supplied a carved and gilt suite of twenty chairs, four sofas and a daybed,  eight candlestands, a pair of girandoles, a pair of console tables, a pair of side tables and a firescreen for a total cost of £376 17s 9d. All this furniture survives, mostly in its original setting and is generally regarded as the finest ensemble of early Rococo furniture in any English country house. The two bills are accompanied by a letter which states that everything was made in Pascall's own workshop. The ensemble evokes episodes from Ovid’s Metamorphoses, alluding to Diana and Actaeon in the girandoles and Pan and Syrinx in the candle stands. The suite was sold from Temple Newsam in 1922 but has now been bought back, with the exception of two tables which are at Floors Castle, property of the Duke of Roxburgh.

About 1750 Joshua Ross, who set up as a frame carver and gilder in Bath, stated in a trade notice that he was ‘From Mr Pascall's in Long Acre, London’.

Source: DEFM; Wells-Cole, ‘Pan and Syrinx, Diana and Actaeon: James and Ann Pascall's Suite of Ovidian Furniture for Temple Newsam’, FHS Newsletter (February 2008).

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