Parquetry inlaid and gilt bronze mounted writing desk by Edwards & Roberts
English, 19th Century
Height 74cm, width 82cm, depth 48cm
This important writing table is after Jean-Henri Riesener, perhaps the most important furniture maker working in Paris during the reign of Louis XVI. The present desk is by the English manufacturers Edwards & Roberts. The desk thus demonstrates a curious history: it is a desk in a distinctly French style, after celebrated French originals, but by an English firm working in the 19th Century.
The desk is supported by faceted, tapering legs—the edges mounted with gilt bronze—above gilt bronze feet. The body of the desk contains twin side drawers and a front writing slide, while the top of the desk is finished with exquisite geometrical parquetry and bounded by a pierced gilt bronze gallery. The desk is set with superb gilt bronze mounts throughout, including ornate intertwining foliage adorning the sides.
The wood inside one drawer stamped ‘Edwards & Roberts’ and a label reads ‘Edwards & Roberts / 148-160 / Wardour St., / 532, Oxford St., / London.’