18th Century French Transitional Cylinder Desk / Writing Table For Sale
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18th Century French Transitional Cylinder Desk / Writing Table


French "bureau a cylindre" of the transitional period between Louis XV and Louis XVI, Breche d'Alep marble top surface with pierced bronze gallery, surmounting an exceptional parquetry geometric cube and sunburst design revolving cylinder part revealing pull-out embossed leather work surface, interior work space contains drawers and secret compartments for storage; kneehole withcenter drawer which is flanked on left by two drawers and right side by one double drawer, exceptional gilded bronze mounts and hardware, supported on four slight cabriole legs with gilded bronze mount on knee with leg terminating in gilded bronze sabots. Ancient Greek and Italian architect inspired the Louis XVI furniture style. The transition period between Louis XV and XVI started a few years before King Louis XV's death in 1774. The style slowly transitioning from the charming ornate rococo shapes to now cleaner lines and just a slight cabriole leg. When the transition was completed, geometric shapes replaced rococo curves and the straight tapering leg superseded cabriole legs. During the early 1600's most paperwork was done on a portable writing table, a storage box with a hinged slanted surface used for writing. Literacy spread and became more value. Furniture makers designed a table to make the master of the home a comfortable place to work, writing surface with drawers for storage and a kneehole for a chair. In the mid 18th & 19th century the French Louis XV & XVI bureau plat, a flat top desk with three horizontal drawers in the apron, was adorned in the libraries of chateaus across France, they were a status of symbol for aristocracy. The English had their Regency version in the mid 19th century which they called a library table. Smaller writing tables were intended for the lady of the house.


  • Condition
  • Wear
    Wear consistent with age and use.
  • Dimensions
    H 44 in. x W 42 in. x D 24 in.H 111.76 cm x W 106.68 cm x D 60.96 cm
  • Seller Location
    Chicago, IL
  • Seller Reference Number
  • Reference Number
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1stdibs seller since 2011
Located in Chicago, IL
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