Gillows large cabinet
Lot 78
A George III mahogany breakfront secretaire library bookcase attributed to Gillows
Sold for £23,750 (US$ 39,414) inc. premium
Lot Details
A George III mahogany breakfront secretaire library bookcase attributed to Gillows
The rectangular cavetto moulded cornice with central curved pediment inlaid with a classical urn flanked by trailing swagged husk chains, above a pair of Gothick astragal glazed doors enclosing three adjustable shelves flanked by larger similar single doors, each enclosing four adjustable shelves, the lower part with central section of two short and four long graduated drawers, the upper long drawer fitted with six alphabetical inlaid lidded boxes flanked by single frieze drawers to each side, above crossbanded single panelled figured doors, each enclosing two adjustable shelves, on a moulded plinth base, 284cm wide, 58cm deep, 262cm high (111.5" wide, 22.5" deep, 103" high).

Footnotes

  • A library secretaire bookcase of similar form can be found in the Gillows Estimate Sketch Book (ref: 344/1335). Dated 1797 it has the characteristic 'Tuscan Cornice' and the alphabeticised compartments in the central secretaire drawer. Other similar bookcases were produced for numerous patrons, with many variations including size, glazing bars and drawer configuration.

    The lancet glazing bars, seen here, are present in the library bookcases made by Gillows for Sir John Shaw Stewart of Ardgowan House, Inverkip, Renfrew in 1802. (See S.Stuart, Gillows of Lancaster and London, 1730-1840, Vol I, plate 439).

    The sophisticated secretaire drawer which features on the lot offered here, with the addition of alphabetically inlaid drawers and a slide is of the type introduced by the firm in 1782 replacing their old pattern of secretaire which had been in use since the 1750s. This form of secretaire is discussed in on p.367 [Ibid].

    A related breakfront secretaire bookcase with a marquetry arched pediment attributed to Gillows was sold Christie's London, 8 July 1999, lot 139.
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