Antique Louis Revival Marquetry Bonheur Du Jour C 1860

Antique Louis Revival Marquetry Bonheur Du Jour C 1860


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About this item

This is a gorgeous Louis Revival French marquetry inlaid ormolu mounted Bonheur Du Jour, or Ladies writing desk, circa 1860 in date.

The bonheur du jour comprises a pair of serpentine cupboard doors which open to reveal a beautifully finished mahogany interior with a shelf with two short drawers below.

It has a useful writing slide with its original velvet inset writing surface above a full width frieze drawer.

The desk features fabulous gilded ormolu mounts with contrasting specimen wood marquetry in the form of scrolling frames with bouquets of foliate and floral marquetry decoration.

The desk graciously stands on slim cabriole legs and is complete with working locks and original keys.

This is an example of superb quality and design.


In excellent condition, please see photos for confirmation.

Dimensions in cm:

Height 52 x Width 85 x Depth 52

Dimensions in inches:

Height 1 foot, 8 inches x Width 2 feet, 9 inches x Depth 1 foot, 8 inches

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.


W85.0 x H52.0 x D52.0 cm



Date of manufacture



19th Century




VAT status

Seller is VAT registered


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