This is a stunning antique French Louis Revival bombe’ parquetry commode, circa 1900 in date.
It is crafted from the most beautiful kingwood and walnut, has solid oak lined drawers, the most wonderful ormolu mounts and a breathtaking “Marmo di Brescia” marble top that has alluring hints of pink and yellow.
It has been beautifullyinlaid with elegant parquetry decoration, has two spacious drawers and the alluring contrast between the kingwood and the marble is offset by the most amazing gilded bronze ormolu handles and mounts.
A truly gorgeous piece, this commode deserves pride of place in any furniture collection.
In excellent condition having been beautifully restored in our workshops, please see photos for confirmation.
Dimensions in cm:
Height 83 x Width 126 x Depth 58
Dimensions in inches:
Height 2 feet, 9 inches x Width 4 feet, 2 inches x Depth 1 foot, 11 inches
Parquetry – is a geometric mosaic of wood pieces used for decorative effect. The two main uses of parquetry are as veneer patterns on furniture and block patterns for flooring. Parquet patterns are entirely geometrical and angular—squares, triangles, lozenges.
The word derives from the Old French parchet (the diminutive of parc), literally meaning “a small enclosed space”. Large diagonal squares known as parquet de Versailles were introduced in 1684 as parquet de menuiserie (“woodwork parquet”) to replace the marble flooring that required constant washing, which tended to rot the joists beneath the floors. Such parquets en lozange were noted by the Swedish architect Daniel Cronström at Versailles and at the Grand Trianon in 1693.
Timber contrasting in colour and grain such as oak, walnut, kingwood, rosewood, maple, etc. are used.
Kingwood is a classic furniture wood, almost exclusively used for inlays on very fine furniture. Occasionally it is used in the solid for small items and turned work, including parts of billiard cues, e.g., those made by John Parris. It is brownish-purple with many fine darker stripes and occasional irregular swirls. Occasionally it contains pale streaks of a similar colour to sapwood.
The wood is very dense and hard and can be brought to a spectacular finish. it turns well but due to its density and hardness can be difficult to work with hand tools. It also has a tendency to blunt the tools due to its abrasive properties.
The Walnut woods are probably the most recognisable and popular of all the exotic woods, having been used in furniture making for many centuries. Walnut veneer was highly priced and the cost would reflect the ‘fanciness’ of the veneer – the more decorative, then the more expensive and desirable.
Ormolu (from French ‘or moulu’, signifying ground or pounded gold) is an 18th-century English term for applying finely ground, high-carat gold in a mercury amalgam to an object of bronze.The mercury is driven off in a kiln leaving behind a gold-coloured veneer known as ‘gilt bronze’.
The manufacture of true ormolu employs a process known as mercury-gilding or fire-gilding, in which a solution of nitrate of mercury is applied to a piece of copper, brass, or bronze, followed by the application of an amalgam of gold and mercury. The item was then exposed to extreme heat until the mercury burned off and the gold remained, adhered to the metal object.
No true ormolu was produced in France after around 1830 because legislation had outlawed the use of mercury. Therefore, other techniques were used instead but nothing surpasses the original mercury-firing ormolu method for sheer beauty and richness of colour. Electroplating is the most common modern technique. Ormolu techniques are essentially the same as those used on silver, to produce silver-gilt (also known as vermeil).
Our reference: 05884
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