Georgian Ebonized Mahogany Secretary Desk | England, 19th Century
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GEORGIAN EBONIZED MAHOGANY SECRETARY BUTLER'S DESK
England, 19th century; in two parts
Item # 904BCZ18O
A finely crafted secretaire situated as a bookcase over a chest of drawers, the upper drawer is "Butler" in form, withdrawing and the drawer facade dropping down over hooped brass slides and original hinges to reveal a tidy desk interior. The writing area is covered in a gilt-tooled black leather before ten small drawers and six pigeon-hole letter compartments.
Notable is the exquisite hand dovetailing, not only in the larger drawers of the lower chest, but much more precise in the tiny interior drawers.
The desk is built in two parts, the upper a self contained bookcase with thirteen glazed panels per door divided by beaded astragal molding, these opening to reveal three adjustable shelves.
It is likely the ebony staining is a later treatment, though the quality and seamlessness of the finish is notable and incredibly effective - a distinct departure from similar "painted" forms, the translucent stain reveals the warm ruby hue of the solid mahogany beneath. It is silky and waxy to the touch.
With clean lines and a fine form, this is a highly relevant and interesting form; beautifully cared for and built to last the test of time, this is a fine acquisition for any classical interior.
Measurements: 87 1/8" H x 45 3/4" W x 21 3/4" D; writing surface is 28 1/2" H from ground, 43 1/8" W x 34 1/2" D
Ebony stain is likely later; shrink cracks here and there; brasses replaced; light surface wear and blemish throughout; desk lid does not close perfectly, but the gap is relatively non-noteworthy.