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An early 19th century amboyna veneered double-sided bookcase, the ends with false book backs, the top and base with gilt enrichments, all standing on bun feet.Amboyna was first used in England during the early 18th century. There is a dressing and writing table of inlaid amboyna at the Victoria and Albert Museum that dates from the Queen Anne period. However, it became particularly fashionable at the turn of the 19th century and is most closely associated with furniture from the Sheraton and Regency periods. The amboyna tree is native to the East Indies, west of New Guinea, and in particular to the island of Seram (also called Seran and Serang and formerly spelt 'Ceram') from where its exceedingly beautiful and highly ornamental burls were once shipped to Europe. (Dutch trading posts were opened in the early 17th century and the island came under nominal Dutch control circa 1650.) The ordinary trunkwood from this tree was not commercially popular and so the more valuable burls are simply termed amboyna wood.
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