Q: We have these unusual wooden chairs that appear to be hand carved and show no attachments. We recently acquired these and were wondering if you had any information about them. We bought them at a private party and love them for their uniqueness. Thank you. —KG, Internet
A: The basic shape of your chair is known as the X-shape, which originated in medieval Italy. The type of chair is called Savonarola. The name is linked to Girolamo Savonarola, 1452-98, a historic Italian Renaissance reformer. In the 19th century, Savonarola was used as a trade name for X-shaped chairs. They were produced in large quantities by many entities in a variety of reliefs and figurative carvings in the Renaissance style.
Dollar values are based on quality, condition and age. The two you have are commercial grade and made into the 20th century. The potential dollar value is around $500 for both, maybe more on a lucky day.
Q: My parents bought me a Mobo the horse about 60 years ago at Jordan Marsh. It measures approximately 27 inches long, 30 inches high, and 13 inches wide. It is a mechanical horse which, when you press the pedals, rises and moves forward on the wheels. It is marked “Mobo the horse, made in England”. It’s in great condition considering I used it a lot when I was young. It takes up a lot of space and I’m interested in selling it. Does anyone collect them? Does it have value or should I just donate it? — MB, Internet
A: While not of particular collector interest, Mobo the Horse is regularly bought and sold in the vintage toy category. I suspect many of our readers remember when they first experienced the magical feeling while riding their Mobo steel pedal horse when they pressed down on the stirrups and released them as the horse actually moved forward – wow, what a sensation for a young person. Mobo the Horse was manufactured by D. Sebel & Company in England from 1947 to 1972.
It is unusual to find a Mobo horse in the condition you are describing your horse in. I think your Mobo horse would sell for between $250 and $500, maybe more with a bit of luck. There is a Mobo the Horse story available online hosted by D&S Pedal Car Restorations.
— John Sikorski, with over 35 years of experience, is an Ocala-based antiques advisor, consultant and broker. Send your questions to Sikorski’s Attic, c/o The Ocala Star-Banner, 2121 SW 19th Ave. Road, Ocala, FL 34471-7752, or email email@example.com.