GEORGE III MAHOGANY CAMPAIGN TRIPLE-SLOPE CAPTAIN’S BOX
England, circa 1790-1800
Item # 801CBQ27
A gorgeous Georgian period campaign triple-slope writing desk, it is often coined a “Captain’s Box” for its’ common use by ship officers for storage of valuables, documents and writing supplies. Retaining almost entirely original fittings, this fine box is mounted by lacquered brass guarding the corners and lending strength to the joinery. These were intended for active and regular use, though the present example was preserved carefully and remains in very fine condition other than some light shrinkage in the woods. The top lifts to reveal a leather document storage folder that is secured in place with two tiny steel tabs that flip out of the way to reveal the folder and the stringing. This is flanked by eight tooled leather flaps for organization. The lower slope flips down to reveal a green-baize covered writing surface. The upper slope lifts with a worn out fabric tab to give access to a document storage area and also a spring-loaded hidden compartment; by depressing a hidden button on the right side of the box, the wooden slat beneath the inkwells pops out to reveal a pair of tiny drawers with turned bone knobs. They are beautifully crafted with tight and perfect joinery. The lower slope also opens to reveal storage below, this secured in place with a brass pin.
For the collector of fine antique boxes, but also for the decorator looking for a tidy way to organize check and letter writing supplies, this is a very fine acquisition.
Measurements: 9 3/4” D x 5 3/4” H x 18” W [closed]
The top showing some shrinkage and a shrinkage crack at the the back proper right corner; front proper left corner with some gapping around brass mount. Old surface with a lovely silky patina throughout. Original working lock and key. Old blown glass inkwells, originality unknown. Early green baize in overall poor condition (torn, stained). Clasp in lower slope has some tiny wood losses that make latching a bit sticky.