Of highly figured timbers with deep rich color, the
serpentine thumbmolded top
over a conforming case with four long
graduated cockbeaded drawers raised on bracket feet;
S-form keyhole locks and
escutcheons* and countersunk original bail form gilt handles,
the drawers with early blue
bearing the remains of an old paper
unusual s-shaped locks and escutcheons where a feature of Thomas
and upon occasion his contemporary
They can be seen on bookcases
supplied by Chippendale to Sir Penistone Lamb for the Library at Brocket Hall in
1772-1775 (see C. Gilbert, The Life and Work of Thomas Chippendale,
London, 1978, vol. II, figs.77,80 and 267). They also appear on a
clothes-press at Harewood House, Yorkshire that was supplied by
Chippendale in the late 1760s (C. Gilbert, op. cit., fig. 249).
These locks and escutcheons were
also known to be used by Philip Bell, upholsterer and cabinetmaker,
in 1758 taking over his
father's firm at White Swan, St. Paul's Churchyard, London.
Bell's more conservative designs
with highly figured timbers were also popular in the early Americas.
In 1761, George Washington ordered
from Bell a bottle cabinet, still on display at Mt. Vernon.
Several pieces of labeled furniture
are in the Colonial Williamsburg collection of British furniture.
For a similar serpentine chest attributed
to Bell, with canted corners and a fitted dressing drawer,
see Bonhams Sale 11084 (2004), Lot 451,
with further footnotes.
Condition : Excellent with minor wear appropriate to age and usage;
wonderful surfaces; original countersunk brasses
33.5 High" x 36.5" Wide x 21.5" Deep