Antique French Prie-Dieu Prayer Chair

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Antique French Prie-Dieu Prayer Chair

As we approach Easter week, we often have more inquiries about the antique religious treasures in our online store. During this Holy Week, I wanted to shine a special spotlight on an antique French prayer chair, also called a prie-dieu in French.Antique French Prie-Dieu for sale at EuroLuxHome.com

These exceptional pieces of furniture are not only beautiful in design, but they are created purely for the purpose of prayer and devotion. Prie-dieu literally means “Pray god” and people use it as a knee rest in their prayers and as a support for prayer books.

Antique Prayer Chair

This superb antique French prie-dieu currently on sale in our online store is a wonderful example.  It is finely crafted in cherry wood and upholstered with green velvet and it dates to about 1890. Notice the decorative shell on the back of the chair and the turned spindle posts.

When we find a prie-dieu while on our buying trips in France, we know that these pieces have been treasured for many years, often for much more than a century. It is touching to to imagine how many devout worshippers have paid their religious devotions and dedicated their prayers while supported by these chairs.

Found in Normandy

Here is another example of a prayer chair, which we found during one of our antiques buying trips. Although prayer chairs were most often for private devotional use at home, some would also be found in churches, like this one that we discovered for sale at a church in Normandy.

antique French Prie Dieu

The chair dated to 1890. It was a bit sad and sorry for itself, but the carvings in the oak wood were lovely and in good shape.

Prie-dieu antique French

So we brought it home and had it reupholstered in red velvet, to keep the overall look of the prayer chair as close as possible to the original upholstery.  Isn't it gorgeous? Our customers thought so, and we quickly got a lot of inquiries and it was snapped up.

The prie-dieu was given its name around the early 17th century although the item of furniture was used long before that. You might sometimes have seen a prie-dieu used at a church wedding, where it is provided for the elaborately bedecked bride and her groom to kneel on during the service!

A Simpler Prayer Chair

The prayer chairs above are quite ornate in their carvings and design, but here's another example with a simpler but no less lovely design.

Vintage French Prayer Chair

This vintage French prie-dieu is still currently available in our online store at the time of writing, and it is crafted in walnut wood and boasts a rattan seat. It dates to about 1930, which explains the lighter and more streamlined silhouette, reflecting the tastes of the modern era around the Art Deco period.

At EuroLuxHome.com, we have a wide variety of 19th century and 20th century prayer decor. These include prayer benches with backrests and armrests, prayer rugs, prayer stools, and even a few prayer kneelers. Whether you're looking for a completely solid wood piece with a high back, a foldable piece or seating with a seat cushion, EuroLux is a great destination in your search for fine home decor.

If you've enjoyed our exploration into the prie-dieu, then you might also enjoy reading my blog post about other kinds of Antique Religious Treasures. You can also browse the vintage and antique French prayer chairs in our online store.

french antique furniture antique dining chairs catholic home decor gothic furniture prie dieu for sale
Aimee @ EuroLux Home

Aimee owns EuroLuxHome.com with her husband and best friend, Greg. With over 20 years' experience in acquiring and selling French Antique Furniture, she is very knowledgeable about furniture styles and how they are influenced by historical events. Aimee has shipped antique furniture and antique furniture reproductions to all 50 States and over 50 foreign countries. Subscribe to this blog for articles about antique furniture construction methods, style trends and even repair tips. Check out our YouTube channel!

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