A rare, late-17th century, walnut-veneered chest of drawers decorated with marquetry inlays

A rare, late-17th century, walnut-veneered chest of drawers decorated with marquetry inlays

1675 to 1700 England

Offered by Lucy Johnson

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The walnut top inlaid with two large, oval, marquetry borders of stylised interlocking leaves, the outer border connecting to a border of running leaves around the edge. The frieze with two short and three long drawers faced with single bead moulding and with later handles and original locks. The drawers also inlaid with marquetry, with circular borders running around the handles flanked by demi-lune borders and finished with a border around the edge. The sides crossbanded and inlaid with rectangular marquetry borders. Standing on replaced bun feet. The carcass in pine, and the re-run drawers lined in oak. Minor repairs to the veneers and inlay. Excellent colour and patina. English, last quarter of the 17th century.

Reference : Important English Furniture 7th November, 1997, Sothebys lot 16. The ends of the drawers, sides and top of this chest, in the manner of Gerrit Jensen, are inlaid with the same single, running leaf border.
This magnificent chest of drawers displays inlaid decoration which is characteristic of the work of Gerrit Jensen who was cabinet maker to the Royal Household from the reign of Charles II to that of Queen Anne. In addition to this, both the colour and configuration of the walnut veneers are exceptional, as is the proportion and condition of the piece.

The exiles who returned home with Charles II were fueled with a desire for increased comfort in their homes, and began to replace chests and coffers with chests of drawers in the bedroom. Chests of drawers veneered with walnut, the tops and drawer-fronts inlaid in the fashion of contemporary tables reflected the growing passion for luxury. This piece plays a role in the final stages of the evolution of English marquetry, succeeding the polychrome birds and flowers of the later years of Charles II’s reign. The style of inlay is characteristic of borders found on the finest, seaweed marquetry of William III.

Height 59.00 cm (23.23 inches)
Width 89.00 cm (35.04 inches)
Depth 97.00 cm (38.19 inches)
Lucy Johnson

Lucy Johnson
Mailing address: Bartons Lodge
Berry End
MK17 9EB

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