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Secretary Desk

Secretary Desk, 19th Century, Ebonized Oak, Tortoise Shells and Brass
Unknown Artist


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Thomas W. Evans Collection

This secretary desk is perhaps the most impressive piece of furniture once owned by Dr. Evans. It was made in the so-called Boulle style, named after André Charles Boulle, who was a  late 17th and early 18th century French cabinet maker, especially famous for his ability to inlaid brass and tortoiseshell into ebonized woods in the most detailed and luxurious manner. This desk dates to the mid-19th century, perhaps 1850s or 1860s when the Boulle style was newly in fashion, especially during the Second Empire. Tall desk like this was often used for writing correspondence, but it could also house and store many personal objects in its various small drawers and behind its many small doors.