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Photo: Courtesy Hilliard and Company, Madison, Va.
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Slant-front desk


Object number

RIF6487

Maker

Maker Unknown

Dimensions

44 41 21 in. (111.76 104.14 53.34 cm)

Date

1760–90

Current location

Unknown

Geography

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

Medium

Mahogany (primary); pine (back boards, some drawer linings, glue blocks on feet); yellow poplar (some drawer linings)

Marks

Unknown

Inscriptions

Unknown

Style

Chippendale

Provenance

Hilliard and Company, Madison, Virginia, September 30, 2017, lot 69

Associated names

Hilliard and Company

Construction

The single-board top meets the case sides in dovetail joints having finely cut pins with half-pins with rabbets at the back and half-pins in front. The molded, hinged lid consists of a single large horizontal board tenoned into flanking vertical boards. The tenons are visible at the top and bottom. The drawer dividers meet the case sides in half-blind dovetail joints. The case bottoms and sides meet in dovetail joints. The interior consists of a concave-blocked, fan-carved prospect door flanked by beaded stiles and open compartments separated by scrolling uprights, with quarter round concave-blocked valance drawers above and convex-blocked small drawers below, flanked by banks of three concave blocked small-drawers (the upper drawers fan-carved), the whole on a concave- and convex-blocked molded base. The interior drawer fronts meet their flush, flat-topped sides in dovetail joints having large, finely cut pins with half-pins above and half-pins with rabbets below. The interior-drawer bottoms are glued and nailed with brads into rabbets in their sides, fronts, and backs. The drawer fronts in the case below are graduated and thumb-molded and meet their drawer sides in dovetail joints having large, thick-necked pins with half-pins above and half-pins with grooves below. The drawer bottoms are parallel to the front, where they fit into grooves, are held in place by brads through applied runners, and nailed with brads into the drawer backs above. A single-piece base molding is fixed to the bottom of the case sides and bottom rail with wood-filled fasteners. The feet consist of shaped vertical blocks attached to the case bottom and flanked by shaped horizontal blocks fixed with rosehead nails, also to the case bottom, the whole faced with ogee-shaped brackets. The backs of the rear feet are simple incurvate brackets of straight profile. The back edges of the rear feet?s side-facing brackets have an ogee profile. Photography courtesy of Hilliard and Company, Madison, Virginia, and Peter Larson.

Bibliography

"Live Auctioneers," https://www.liveauctioneers.com/item/56279856_19th-c-chippendale-style-slant-front-desk (accessed September 30, 2017), lot 69.