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A MAGNIFICENT GEORGE I BURR WALNUT BUREAU BOOKCASE 

Origin: England
Circa Date: 1725
Stock No: F3A0234
Location: London
Dimensions:
H: 98.8 in (251.0 cm)
W: 46.9 in (119.0 cm)
L/D: 26.0 in (66.0 cm)
Price Range:
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A magnificent George I parcel gilt burr-walnut bureau bookcase in the manner of Giles Grendey. The upper part has a broken classical swan-neck pediment enclosing a giltwood heraldic foliate shield with cartouche-shaped mirrored doors below. These open to reveal a fitted interior with gilded central cartouche door of richly marked burred veneers, flanked by miniature drawers and folio pigeon-holes. The lower part, of rare bombe form, has a sloping rest, opening to reveal a fitted interior with a central mirrored cupboard and unusual curved drawers to each side. The two short drawers and three graduated long drawers beneath the sloped front are richly mounted with gilded handles and escutcheons and flanked by gilded corner mounts on the bombe frame. The whole piece stands on ogee-shaped bracket feet and is unique in having each element of its construction articulated by varying giltwood stringing.

The present bureau cabinet combines the unusual attributes of a bombe lower section, gilt-gesso ornament and gilt-brass corner mounts. The broken pediment and cartouche shaped framing to the mirror panel used in conjunction with elaborate rocaille gilt-brass mounts are consistent with the output of a leading London cabinet-maker. In particular they correlate with those found on a documented bureau cabinet from a celebrated red japanned suite of furniture supplied by the cabinet-maker Giles Grendey (1693-1780) to the Duke of Infantado for his castle at Lazcano, near San Sebastian, northern Spain (see Christopher Gilbert, Pictorial Dictionary of Marked London Furniture, 1996, p.247, pl.447).

The cabinet was acquired from Mallett by Gerald Hochschild who then offered it at Sotheby's London, The Hochschild Collection of Highly Important English Furniture, 1 December 1978, lot 13. The cabinet is also illustrated in Lanto Synge, Mallett's Great English Furniture, 1991, p. 49, pl. 43. Another single door cabinet of the same form but lacking a cartouche and finials to its pediment is also illustrated L. Synge op. cit., p. 50, pl. 44.

Provenance:
Mallett
Gerald Hochschild
Sotheby's London, The Hochschild Collection of Highly Important English Furniture, 1 December 1978, lot 13
Private American collection
Mallett

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