Until the mid-19th century, the standard chest had either four long, or three long and two short drawers. Rarely were there any exceptions to this rule. A chest with three drawers, or a series of small upper drawers, purporting to be Georgian, will probably have been converted from a chest-on-chest or tallboy. It is true that the 18th century commode often contain two long deep drawers, but this was a much grander and more decorative piece altogether, intended for drawing rooms, not bedrooms, and in any case was usually made to stand on legs. The standard chest of drawers continued to be made throughout the 19th and early 20th centuries (some Edwardian pine chests even had bracket feet), but variations were introduced during the mid-Victorian period, with some chests having seven or more drawers usually a deep hat drawer and smaller glove compartments. Chests with barley-sugar twist or split bobbin-turned supports date from the mid-19th century.
Louis XV style oak commode, 19th century, of serpentine shape with four drawers, raised on cabriole legs, ebonised finish with gilded brass handles. Provenance: Purchased from Howell & Howell, July 2008
A fine Louis XVI style marquetry secretaire À abbatant, 19th century, in mahogany and tulipwood and fashioned as a semainier, with a marble top, curved edges, a fall front with a bird's eye maple fitted interior and four drawers below, a shaped apron w
A George III mahogany bowfront chest of four drawers, the graduating full width drawers each with an oval brass back plate swing handle, moulded edge detail, raised on bracket feet. 110 x 57.5 x 101 cm
Napoleon III ormolu mounted ebonised boulle Semainier, c. 1860 white marble overlaid top above three mock drawers forming the fall front and four drawers, the whole inlaid with cut brass on a red tortoiseshell ground, with a shaped apron and bracket feet.
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