An Exhibition quality French mid-19th century quarter-veneered tulipwood, rosewood, green boulle, pewter and brass inlaid mechanical secrétaire, circa 1850, presented at the Great Exhibition of 1851 by Daubet & Dumarest, Rue d'Algerie 2, Lyon
Lot 166Y
An Exhibition quality French mid-19th century quarter-veneered tulipwood, rosewood, green boulle, pewter and brass inlaid mechanical secrétaire, circa 1850, presented at the Great Exhibition of 1851
by Daubet & Dumarest, Rue d'Algerie 2, Lyon
Sold for £12,500 (US$ 20,425) inc. premium

Lot Details
An Exhibition quality French mid-19th century quarter-veneered tulipwood, rosewood, green boulle, pewter and brass inlaid mechanical secrétaire, circa 1850, presented at the Great Exhibition of 1851 by Daubet & Dumarest, Rue d'Algerie 2, Lyon An Exhibition quality French mid-19th century quarter-veneered tulipwood, rosewood, green boulle, pewter and brass inlaid mechanical secrétaire, circa 1850, presented at the Great Exhibition of 1851 by Daubet & Dumarest, Rue d'Algerie 2, Lyon An Exhibition quality French mid-19th century quarter-veneered tulipwood, rosewood, green boulle, pewter and brass inlaid mechanical secrétaire, circa 1850, presented at the Great Exhibition of 1851 by Daubet & Dumarest, Rue d'Algerie 2, Lyon An Exhibition quality French mid-19th century quarter-veneered tulipwood, rosewood, green boulle, pewter and brass inlaid mechanical secrétaire, circa 1850, presented at the Great Exhibition of 1851 by Daubet & Dumarest, Rue d'Algerie 2, Lyon
An Exhibition quality French mid-19th century quarter-veneered tulipwood, rosewood, green boulle, pewter and brass inlaid mechanical secrétaire, circa 1850, presented at the Great Exhibition of 1851
by Daubet & Dumarest, Rue d'Algerie 2, Lyon
fitted with a variety of secret drawers and comparments, all working via a mechanism operated by means of a single key, the drawers all running on bearings, the exterior all-over quarter-veneered, panelled and inlaid with brass lines, the interior of pewter-inlaid green tortoiseshell, the drawers lined in rosewood, the dovetail's shaped as fleur-de-lys in a contrasting timber, the upper section comprising four glazed doors, the central recessed pair enclosing two short and one long drawer, all concealing further drawers, beneath a tortoiseshell-lined dome before a mirrored backplate, the two flanking glazed doors opening by means of a mechanised moulding and enclosing three shelves, the lower section with secrétaire drawer with curving fall-front enclosing four short drawers around a mirror plate, all above three panel-fronted mechanised drawers, the uppermost with secret compartment, a further secret drawer enclosed in the plinth, raised on brass castors, the secrétaire drawer front inlaid with an ivorine plaque reading DAUBET & DUMAREST, ÉBÉNISTES BREVETÉS, Membres de l'Acadamie nationale, Rue d'Algerie, 2, Lyon, the lock engraved BREVET D'INVENTION, Ss Gtie Duct, 97cm wide, 53cm deep, 144cm high (38in wide, 20.5in deep, 56.5in high).

Footnotes

  • Exhibited: Great Exhibition of 1851 where awarded a prize medal.

    See Exposition Universelle de 1851: Travaux de Commission Française sur l'industrie des nations, Charles Dupin (1855), Volume VII, pp. 36 - 37, where the juries verdict of this secretaire - with a single locking mechanism, an ingeneous system of bearings beneath each drawer, and with sliding glass doors - is recorded:

    'MM DAUBET et DUMAREST, de Lyon, marchent dignement à côté de M. Krieger pour leurs meubles à système nouveau, d'une commodité sans pareille.

    Ils avaient exposé deux bureaux de style différent, mais d'un mérite égal.

    L'un, bureau de dame, en tulipier rose, formant commode-étagère à glace, n'a qu'une seule serrure placée en haut de meuble et correspondant à toutes les parties mobiles et à tous les tiroirs, de manière que pour l'ouvrir un tour de clef suffit. La table à écrire s'avance, les portes disparaissent en même temps, et les tiroirs sont libres.

    Pour refermer le bureau, il suffit de pousser la table sans déranger les objets qui y sont placés, et tout se trouve instantanément fermé de la manière la plus solide.

    Les tiroirs marchent entre des galets placés dans tous les sens, sans paraître exterieurement; le jeu en est si facile qu'ils peuvent, avec le moindre effort, être tirés quel que soit l'etat de la température.

    Tous ces tiroirs ont un mécanisme qui correspond à la serrure, de manière qu'ils rentrent d'eux-mêmes dans le corps du meuble et se referment du moment où l'on donne un tour de clef au bureau. Une autre clef ouvre les tiroirs sans ouvrir le bureau.

    Le travail d'ébénisterie, de serrurerie et de menuiserie, dans ce meuble de luxe, du prix 7,500, fait grand honneur à MM. Daubet et Dumarest.

    Ils appliquent le même système de fermeture et de galets à des meubles beaucoup plus simples, d'une valeur qui descend à 1500 francs, à 1000 francs et au-dessous, jusqu'a 300 francs. Leur système de galets sert à toute espèce de meubles à tiroirs, sans augmentation sensible de prix.

    Ces dispositions ingénieuses n'offrent pas seulement le mérite de la difficulté vaincue, mais aussi celui d'une utilité réelle.'

    See Exhibition of the Works of Industry of All Nations, 1851: Reports by the Juries on the Subjects in the Thirty Classes Into which the Exhibition was Divided (1852), p. 546, where it is noted, 'there is another branch of cabinet-work which merits particular notice, that in which mechanical action is introduced; the specimens exibited by MM. DAUBET and DAUMARET, of Lyon (Exhibit No. 1579) are most ingenious and curious; in their secrétaire, which is full of contrivances, one key unlocks all the drawers. These run in the most easy and perfect manner, if touched in the slightest degree; and the closing of one particular drawer shuts and fastens all the others.'

    See J. Meyer, Great Exhibitions: London, New York, Paris, Philadelphia 1851 - 1900 (2006), p. 48, where this exhibitor is noted as an important contributor of mechanical furniture.

    Daubet and Dumarest were cabinet makers in Lyon, working from no. 2 rue d'Algerie. In 1855, they exhibited at the Exposition Universelle with an ormolu-mounted thuya bureau made for the Empress Eugenie, the wife of Napoleon III.

    See Christie's, 18th December 2002, Amsterdam, Lot 624 (€5,975) for a cabinet made circa 1830 - 1840, which also has a mechanism operated by a single keyhole, also stamped BREVET D'INVENTION Ss Gtie Duct.

    Please refer to the department for operating instructions.
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