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Photo: Courtesy Skinner, Inc., Boston and Marlborough, Mass.
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Slant-front desk


Object number

RIF6514

Maker

Maker Unknown

Dimensions

42 1/2 36 17 1/4 in. (107.95 91.44 43.82 cm)

Date

1770–90

Current location

Unknown

Geography

Made in southeastern Massachusetts, or possibly made in Rhode Island
(view a map of Rhode Island)

Medium

Maple (primary); pine (interior drawer linings); chestnut (bottom board and back boards)

Marks

Unknown

Inscriptions

Unknown

Style

Chippendale

Provenance

Robert S. Walin Antiques, Woodbury, Connecticut; sold to a Cornwall, Connecticut, collector; consigned to Skinner, Inc., Boston and Marlborough, Massachusetts, November 4, 2017, lot 36

Associated names

Robert S. Walin Antiques
Skinner, Inc.

Construction

The single-board top meets the single-board case sides in dovetail joints having large pins, with half-pins in front. The hinged lid consists of three pieces?a large horizontal board tenoned and thrice wood-pinned to flanking vertical boards. The joints between them are visible at the top and bottom of the lid. It opens to an interior with a two-drawer prospect section flanked by four valanced pigeonholes and two small drawers, above a slightly ressaulted base with three longer drawers, on a cove-molded base. The smaller-drawer fronts meet their flush, flat-topped drawer sides in large, thick-necked dovetail joints, with half-pins above. The larger drawers are similarly configured except for their dovetail joints, which have only half-pins above and long tails below. The case back consists of three half-lapped boards fixed into rabbets in the case sides with rosehead nails. The case-front?s top rail/writing surface and the drawer dividers below are half-blind dovetailed and wood-pinned to the case sides. The uprights which flank the molded loper-fronts are set in grooves in the neighboring rails. The thumb-molded, graduated drawer fronts meet their flush, flat-topped sides in dove-tailed joints having half-pins above and large, thick-necked pins below. The single-board case bottom meets the case sides in dovetail joints having large, thick-necked pins of slightly varying configuration. The base is in five pieces?the front and sides each consist of an integral base bolding, horizontal rail and two ogee brackets, fixed to the case bottom with wood-filled fasteners; they meet each other in miter joints. The back-facing rear feet are large trapezoidal, straight-profiled brackets fixed to the case bottom with rosehead nails and to the side brackets with wood-filled fasteners. Photographs courtesy of Skinner Inc., Boston and Marlborough, Mass; notes compiled by T.B. Lloyd.

Bibliography

Skinner, Inc., Boston and Marlborough, Mass., American Furniture and Decorative Arts, sale cat. (November 4, 2017), 16, lot 36, ill.