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Antique Victorian washstand Edwards & Roberts c.1880

Antique Victorian washstand Edwards & Roberts Sold
Ref:07090b

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This is a spectacular antique late Victorian mahogany and floral marquetry washstand by the renowned cabinet maker and retailer Edwards & Roberts, circa 1880 in date.

It is inlaid with a beautiful marquetry of scrolls and foliage in satinwood with crossbanding in ebony and boxwood, is fitted with it's beautiful original Adam style  brass handles and has the original working locks and keys.

The washstand has a beautiful back with two shelves and a rouge marble inset panel, over a rouge marble surface. There is a central pair of drawers over an open cupboard  flanked by a cupboard on each side. It is raised on square tapering legs that terminate in their original brass and porcelain castors.
 

Condition:

In excellent condition having been beautifully cleaned and polished in our workshops, please see photos for confirmation.

Dimensions in cm:

Height 136 x Width 136 x Depth 58

Dimensions in inches:

Height 4 feet, 5 inches x Width 4 feet, 5 inches x Depth 1 foot, 11 inches

Edwards & Roberts 
was founded in 1845, and had premises at 21 Wardour Street London. By the 1892 they occupied more than a dozen buildings in Wardour Street, where they continued to trade until the end of the century.

They became one of the leading London cabinet makers and retailers working in a variety of styles, both modern and revivalist. Their business also involved retailing, adapting and restoring the finest antique furniture and there are many examples of their earlier furniture with later embellishments bearing their stamp.
Edwards & Roberts specialised in marquetry, inlay and ormolu.

Marquetry
is decorative artistry where pieces of material (such as wood, mother of pearl, pewter, brass silver or shell) of different colours are inserted into surface wood veneer to form intricate patterns such as scrolls or flowers.


The technique of veneered marquetry had its inspiration in 16th century Florence. Marquetry elaborated upon Florentine techniques of inlaying solid marble slabs with designs formed of fitted marbles, jaspers and semi-precious stones. This work, called opere di commessi, has medieval parallels in Central Italian "Cosmati"-work of inlaid marble floors, altars and columns. The technique is known in English as pietra dura, for the "hardstones" used: onyx, jasper, cornelian, lapis lazuli and colored marbles. In Florence, the Chapel of the Medici at San Lorenzo is completely covered in a colored marble facing using this demanding jig-sawn technique.

Techniques of wood marquetry were developed in Antwerp and other Flemish centers of luxury cabinet-making during the early 16th century. The craft was imported full-blown to France after the mid-seventeenth century, to create furniture of unprecedented luxury being made at the royal manufactory of the Gobelins, charged with providing furnishings to decorate Versailles and the other royal residences of Louis XIV. Early masters of French marquetry were the Fleming Pierre Golle and his son-in-law, André-Charles Boulle, who founded a dynasty of royal and Parisian cabinet-makers (ébénistes) and gave his name to a technique of marquetry employing shell and brass with pewter in arabesque or intricately foliate designs.
  

 

Angelica Kauffman, RA (1741 - 1807)

was a Swiss-born Austrian Neoclassical painter who had a successful career in London and Rome. Though born as "Kauffmann", Kauffman is the preferred spelling of her name in English; it is the form she herself used most in signing her correspondence, documents and paintings.

While Kauffman produced many types of art, she identified herself primarily as a history painter, an unusual designation for a woman artist in the 18th century. History painting, was considered the most elite and lucrative category in academic painting during this time period. Under the direction of Sir Joshua Reynolds, the Royal Academy made a strong effort to promote history painting to a native audience who were more interested in commissioning and buying portraits and landscapes.

Despite the popularity that Kauffman enjoyed in British society and her success as an artist, she was disappointed by the relative apathy that the British had towards history painting. Ultimately she left Britain for the continent, where history painting was better established, held in higher esteem and patronized.

The works of Angelica Kauffman have retained their reputation. By 1911, rooms decorated with her work were still to be seen in various quarters. At Hampton Court was a portrait of the duchess of Brunswick; in the National Portrait Gallery, a self-portrait. There were other pictures by her at Paris, at Dresden, in the Hermitage at St Petersburg, in the Alte Pinakothek atMunich, in Kadriorg Palace, Tallinn (Estonia).

Satinwood

is a hard and durable wood with a satinlike sheen, much used in cabinetmaking, especially in marquetry. It comes from two tropical trees of the family Rutaceae (rue family). East Indian or Ceylon satinwood is the yellowish or dark-brown heartwood of Chloroxylon swietenia.

The lustrous, fine-grained, usually figured wood is used for furniture, cabinetwork, veneers, and backs of brushes. West Indian satinwood, sometimes called yellow wood, is considered superior. It is the golden yellow, lustrous, even-grained wood found in the Florida Keys and the West Indies.

It has long been valued for furniture. It is also used for musical instruments, veneers, and other purposes. Satinwood is classified in the division Magnoliophyta, class Magnoliopsida, order Sapindales, family Rutaceae.

Our reference: 07090b