Must I, a king , sit here to be unkinged
And stoop the neck to bear my children’s yoke?
Begone, I say, lest my present wrath
Make me forget the place by blood I hold
Beginning in 1795 and lasting for a year and a half William Ireland produced a treasure trove of documents undoubtedly attributable to William Shakespeare.
Except they were all false and this was the pinnacle of 18th Century literary forgery.
This should have played well to the masses given the rise of English nationalism and impending world domination* by the great English Navy but even the average ill-educated commoner wasn’t fooled: the play sucked, it was poorly written and nothing like anything Shakespeare would have authored.
The experts (including the great Boswell) believed it was real but the public actually had hard currency on the line and weren’t taken in by the basic con-artist premise: Suggest a plausible story, let your victim fill in the details.
It was so very close a thing.
In a similar fashion this hall tree with umbrella stand is a good vessel for creating a new myth of your own around.
“Oh that old thing? It belonged to an eccentric physician in the little town my Aunt Ethel lived in. Nobody knew his name, they just called him ‘The Doctor.’ He’d disappear for long periods of time, and often have strange guests. Sometimes though he’d step out of the room for only a moment and return with something you’d have thought it would have taken him hours to make. It was very strange.
He was a collector of oddities too. In the barn there was steel-clad thing that looked like a giant armored pepper shaker. And there was a giant blue wooden box with a door upon it. It was always locked and the kids never did manage to get into it.
One day there was a weird whooshing sound and a bright light and he was never seen again, the strange thing is the box and the metal thing were gone too and no one, not even nosy Nellie, who watched out her window day and night saw them leave. It was a pity too Ethel said, because he grew the most wonderful gladiolas and they never bloomed quite the same again. “
Alternatively it is late 19th or early 20th century hall tree and umbrella stand. Oddly it still has the metal drip cup for the umbrellas which is almost always long gone. Three of the four hooks are likely original but the one at the lower left is a replacement. In general it is in good condition and stands about 80 1/2 inches tall.
*Other than the pesky former colonies in America.