Learn about Chest of Drawers

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.
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19th century Camphorwood secretaire campaign chest, Provenance: Allport Family

An Impressive New Zealand made Art Deco style chest of drawers, in kahikatea, with three secretaire drawers raised over five banks of double drawers with unusual full length continuous relief handles extending to sides, height105 cm, width112 cm

19th century Campaign chest, in mahogany with brass fittings, raised on original turned feet, a pair of secretaire drawers over three banks of drawers, in two parts, height110 cm, width98.5 cm, depth47.5 cm

George III mahogany secretaire chest of drawers, c. 1800, the rectangular top above a fall front bureau with pigeon holes and three drawers, height 114 cm width 108 cm depth 50 cm

Antique Swedish biedermeier secretaire chest, with fall front writing surface opening to a fitted interior, above drawers with hinged side lock, 83 cm wide, 145 cm high

George III walnut secretaire chest on chest, 120 cm wide, 194.5 cm high. Purchased W F Bradshaw, Queen St. Woollahra 1984.

Victorian cedar and mahogany secretaire chest, with upper compartment opening to adjustable shelves, 108 cm wide, 213 cm high

A French mahogany four drawer commode having secretaire drawer with fitted interior. 103 cm high, 122 cm wide, 60 cm deep. (Key in office).

A Georgian secretaire chest of four drawers, fully fitted interior, 118x118x55 cm

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

An Anglo Indian teak secretaire campaign chest, late 19th century, with brass fittings and carry handles, the central fall front drawer enclosing pigeon holes and drawers, flanked by short drawers above lower section of three drawers, 107 width x 51.5 dept

A Victorian mahogany secretaire 'Campaign' chest of drawers, with four drawers, each with flush brass handles, the secretaire drawer opening to a fitted interior, turned feet, 112.5 x 117.5 x 54 cm

A Victorian cedar secretaire Wellington chest. Later 19th century, the chest with six drawers of differing depths, one with a faux front serving as a fold down writing plane and concealing two half width drawers and four pigeon holes, with acanthus carved

Secretaire chest Australian cedar c1835. Sydney, plate 36 Australian furniture a guidebook by John Buttsworth, illustrated in nineteenth century Australian furniture plates 51 and 52. Sydney origin, the rectangular top above a stepped front with a generous

Victorian mahogany secretaire chest with 3 long drawers above a secretaire drawer and 2 further long drawers. Provenance: Sotheby's Sydney

19th century teak two stage secretaire campaign chest of neat proportions, brass corners and folding handles on bracket feet

Victorian teak campaign chest on chest with brass handles & secretaire top

Antique European walnut secretaire chest, with fitted interior and 3 long drawers, 85 cm wide, 90 cm high approx

A French transitional mahogany three drawer secretaire commode. 96 cm high, 128 cm wide, 61 cm deep

Victorian mahogany secretaire chest with fitted interior above 3 long drawers, 101 cm wide, 111 cm high

19th century secretaire chest of drawers with fitted interior

An unusual huon pine secretaire chest of drawers, Tasmanian, circa 1830, 97 cm high, 64 cm wide, 45 cm deep

A George III mahogany secretaire chest of drawers, English, 19th century. 86 cm high, 102 cm wide, 60 cm deep

An Anglo Indian Secretaire campaign chest, camphor wood and brass, second quarter of the 19th century, separating into two sections, the upper section having a fall front secretaire drawer flanked by a single and two smaller drawers respectively, below whi

A Victorian mahogany secretaire Wellington chest c.1870-1880. The chest has six drawers, with two interior half size drawers. The third drawer has a pull-out secretaire hinged front, with tooled leather writing surface. Height 118 cm; width 61 cm; Depth 41

A French Louis Philippe style mahogany upright eight drawer chest with secretaire

A French walnut secretaire chest, the marble top above a secretaire drawer with a fitted interior, above brass banded graduated drawers flanked by fluted pilasters on turned feet. 140 cm high, 74 cm wide, 39 cm deep

A superb George III mahogany chest on chest, with a moulded cornice, above two short and three graduated drawers, the lower with secretaire drawer and graduated drawers below supported on four bracket feet

A Louis XV style verde marble mounted kingwood and pallisander secretaire semainier chest, French, late 19th century, 127 cm high, 64 cm wide, 35 cm deep

Secretaire: A fine & rare chest, cedar with rose mahogany veneered front & satinwood pigeonhole interior, circa late 1830s early 1840s. Unusual French influenced front feet, pilaster corners with scrolling leafy capitals. New South Wales origin. Height 122

Flame mahogany secretaire chest. String inlay. Fall-front fitted fruitwood secretaire. Nine lockable drawers. Height 125 cm. Width 125 cm. Depth 57 cm

Antique Regency mahogany secretaire chest of drawers, 108 cm wide x 106 cm high

A good 19th century mahogany secretaire campaign chest. Two section split form, with secretaire. The fall enclosing birdseye maple drawers and pigeon holes, red leather inset writing surface, all above three long drawers, inset brass corner capping, strapp

A 19th century mahogany military campaign chest of unusual configuration, by the 'Army & Navy C.S.L. (Makers)', in a configuration of two drawers above three of full width, the upper section right hand drawer opening as a secretaire and with an interior fi

Antique French marble topped secretaire chest of drawers, 126 cm wide x 99 cm high

Good Georgian secretaire chest, a fall front secretaire with fitted interior and cross banded inlay, 2 small drawers on either side, 3 long drawers below, 116 cm wide, 56 cm deep, 104 cm high

19th century teak two stage secretaire campaign chest the secretaire drawer fall front and pigeon hole interior, three further drawers below on bracket feet with flush brass handles and corners

A French 19th century mahogany chest, the black marble top above a secretaire drawer enclosing an inset writing interior above three graduated drawers. 103 cm high, 122 cm wide, 60 cm deep.

A teak military secretaire chest, the upper section with a full width drawer, the front opening to reveal pigeon holes and small drawers, above two drawers of half width, the lower section with two drawers of full width, all with recessed brass handles, br

Antique mahogany secretaire chest of drawers, paperwork from Copperfield Antiques provided 'C.1830'. Fall front secretaire with fitted interior and leather insert writing surface flanked by two short drawers, with three long drawers below. Spiral twist car

A George IV mahogany secretaire chest of five drawers, circa 1825, one brass loop drawer handle detached and missing, 108.5 x 103 x 57.5 cm