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The "Navy" chair

The history of the Navy chair is one of the most surprising and ingenious I know. During the Second World War, the American Navy encountered a problem with the chairs they had on board, as the usually ended up destroyed by the rough sailors after months of being at sea. They urgently needed chairs as robust as they are lightweight, not magnetic, immune to the rust produced by sea salt, and also fire-resistant. Mission almost impossible. In the forties, Wilton C. Dinges of Emeco worked with a navy admiral on the production of these chairs made from recycled...

The "Sánchez"chair

The sculptor José Luis Sánchez still retains a pair of overalls that he was given while on a trip to Finland from Pi, the first wife of Timo Sarpaneva, who owned a company dedicated to the design of work clothes. He had met them, he and Tappio Wirkkala, years earlier in the 1954 Milan Triennale when José Luis was a young scholar responsible for the care of Ramón Vázquez Molezún’s Spanish Pavilion, while Sarpaneva was the star guest of his country’s pavilion. This stay in Milan was very fruitful for José Luis, who, in support of the romantic pretentions of Titta,...

Get up on time in the House of Lords

The word seat comes from the latin scamnum that meant 'bench, chair or platform'. Not everyone has the privilege of sitting on the padded benches of the House of Lords, but Sir Bernard Montgomery, conqueror of Field Marshal Rommel in El Alamein (1942) deserved his seat. One day, occupying his spot on the red bench, he stood up, turned toward a Lord seated to his right, with a serene expression and softly said, 'I apologize for disturbing you, but I am suffering from a coronary thrombosis'. Indeed, the doctors who treated him at the hospital concluded that...

Stylish chairs for "royal business"

Consulting the Seven Games, we discover that Alfonso X used the same room for all royal uses: council, banquets, and the most intimate “comforts”… The Book of the Chamber explains that the bathroom was a room located alongside the room where food, lavatory services, clothes and prayer books were stored and…a chair or square box that contained the chamber pot… In the chronicles of the trip of Charles V, the luxurious bathrooms of the Najera Castle were described as “covered in yarn and silk upholstery”. Elizabeth I of England used for her necessities a type of...

The shatterproof glass: decisive invention

The Marquise of Brezé, sister of Cardinal Richelieu only sat surrounded by cushions, because she was convinced that she had a backside of glass. This noble family provided very illustrious characters as well as outrageous ones. The Cardinal Richelieu ended his life believing that he was a horse, and whinnied as he circled the billiard table. His brother fell into the delusion of believing himself to be God the Father. The number of madmen who believed to be of glass – like Tomas Rodaja, the degreed follower of Cervantes – today is not as abundant as in old...

A tomb for a chair

Among the most famous “imaginary sick” there is Judge Du Heeain. This magistrate, who practiced his career in Caen, was very apprehensive and gave into the delusion of believing himself to be phthisic. Despite his fairly healthy appearance, he didn’t want anyone to interrupt his repose and he remained seated in a chair where he even attended judicial cases. Later, he began to complain of migraines. And, doctors told him that darkness and rest alleviate the headaches, Judge Du Hellain increased his resting position, always remaining seated or lying in bed....
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