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Dressing table


Object number

RIF6127

Maker

Maker Unknown

Dimensions

81.92 x 93.98 x 78.74 cm (32 1/4 x 37 x 31 in.)

Date

1760–1780

Current location

The Rhode Island Historical Society

Geography

Made in Rhode Island
(view a map of Rhode Island)

Medium

Mahogany (primary); chestnut and yellow poplar (secondary)

Marks

None

Inscriptions

“1,” in graphite, on top of divider under upper drawer; “1” and “2,” in graphite, on interior fronts and sides [at corners] of long drawers [from top to bottom]; “2,” in graphite, on interior front [at center and in corners] of proper-right lower drawer; “2” and “3,” in graphite, on interior sides [at front corners] of proper-right lower drawer; “4,” in graphite, on interior fronts and sides [at front corners] of proper-left lower drawer; “B[?]” and another illegible mark, in graphite, on exterior case back; “7,” in chalk, on bottom of supports for proper-left lower drawer; “2,” in chalk, on bottom of supports for proper-left lower drawer; “4,” in chalk, on proper-right interior case side; “6,” in chalk, on proper-left interior case side; “1” and “2,” in chalk, on glue blocks of proper-left rear leg; “7” and “8,” in chalk, on glue blocks of proper-right rear leg; “Top,” in graphite, on interior of back board

Style

Queen Anne

Provenance

George Livesey (1895–1983), Providence, Rhode Island; bequeathed to the Rhode Island Historical Society, Providence, 1984

Associated names

George Livesey

Construction

The rectangular oblong top is molded on its front and side edges, where it is supported by a beaded cove molding, attached to the case by invisible means. The overhanging back edge is square and the cove molding returns upon itself at the rear corners. The top is secured to the case by various means – four nail pockets in the outside top of the backboard, multiple horizontal chamfered glue blocks at the joints between the top and backboard, and two transverse battens, set into grooves in the backboard and top rail, and fixed to the underside of the top with rosehead nails. Below each transverse batten is a tip bar concealed by the veneer on the face of the stiles. Within the case are drawer supports for the two upper long drawers, set into grooves in the case back, and half-lapped to the drawer dividers in front. The supports for the lower long drawer are further supported by the top of the detachable legs and by their attendant vertical glue blocks. To the tops of the drawer supports are glued drawer guides which stop just shy of the backboard. Supports and guides for the small drawers are set into grooves in the backboard and dovetailed to the skirtboard. Additional small-drawer guides (one replaced) are lapped over and fixed with rosehead nails to the legs? vertical glue blocks. There are two horizontal chamfered glue blocks at the joint between the skirt board behind the shell and the lower drawer divider. The two long and two small drawers are lipped and thumb-molded. The long-drawers? kerf-marked fronts meet their slightly shorter, scribe-lined, arch-topped sides in dovetail joints having narrow-necked pins, with half-pins above and below. Some tails are reinforced with brads. The two-board drawer bottoms are perpendicular to the front, chamfered at the front and the full-depth sides, where they fit into grooves, and nailed with brads to the drawer backs, whose tops are square in front, rounded in back, and have rounded corners. Full-depth runners are glued into the joints between drawer sides and bottoms. The small-drawer fronts have dovetail joints of slightly varying configuration, with half-pins above and rabbets below. Their flat, single-board bottoms are also perpendicular to the fronts, but nailed with brads to the elements above. The cabriole legs, with angular, square-sectioned knees, rounded ankles and shod pad feet with incised heels, are of the ?detachable? sort. Carved knee brackets are held on by various means – glue, nails, later screws. The rear legs project beyond the backboard. Examined by P. E. Kane and J. N. Johnson, August 18, 2014; notes compiled by T. B. Lloyd.