A very fine a rare mid-19th century Gillows brass mounted mahogany pedestal / partners desk with provenance from Lord Berners estate. Having a Warring and Gillow Ltd, Removal and Warehouse Department label to the underside.
English circa 1860.
The rectangular mahogany top with lobed corners and conforming inset rounds being enclosed by a caddy top moulded brass banding, with a gilt tooled faded green shaped leather inset gilt writing surface. The frieze having one long recessed drawer and two short drawers above three further graduated drawers all with recessed brass moulded panels, brass escutcheons and locks stamped I. Cadwallader London.
The pedestals and frieze having recessed brass panels to both sides whilst the front and backs being flanked by two brass fluted columns terminating on ring turned toupie feet with brass mounts and sabots.
The reverse side being mirrored with false drawers to the frieze with single doors to each pedestal below which each open to reveal and single shelf.
Offered in excellent condition having been carefully restored using traditional methods.
The form of this desk conforms with a design in the ‘Gillow Furniture Designs 1760-1800’, 1995 by Lindsay Boynton, illustration 21 Library Table, 1792. The image is at the end of our images showing a striking resemblance having the columns to each corner of the pedestal which is an extremely rare design.
Also in Geoffrey Beard and Judith Goodison book, ‘English Furniture 1500-1840’, 1987, p. 276, illustration 3. This desk is described as being ‘based on a typical Gillow model.’
Currently on the market is another brass bound desk of very similar form with brass work reminiscent to ours having the locks stamped Gillow. Along with the fact this writing desks locks are from London makers which would presume a London cabinet making firm and the sheer quality of this desk are all signs associated with Gillows.
Lastly the desk bears Warring and Gillow Ltd, Removal and Warehouse Department label to the underside which would confirm the maker. This desk would have been purchased from Gillows and then at a later date the owners would have returned to Gillows (which would have now been changed to Warring and Gillows from 1897) to resale/store/move.
Gillows of Lancaster establish by Robert Gillow in the 18th Century are renowned for being the most celebrated of all English furniture makers. Articles made by Gillows are extremely desirable and sought after with the firm being known for their exceptional craftsmanship and use of quality timber, most of which they imported themselves.
Lord Berners of the Farringdon house estate.
Lindsay Boynton, ‘Gillow Furniture Designs 1760-1800’, 1995, illus. 21.
Geoffrey Beard and Judith Goodison, ‘English Furniture 1500-1840’, 1987, p. 276, illus. 3.
Width 60 inches – 152.5cm
Height 30 ¼ inches – 77cm
Depth 31 ¾ inches – 81cm
Knee Height 23 ½ inches – 59.5cm