A Baroque 17th Century/
early 18th Century break fronted Cabinet on stand, possibly Naples Italy,
circa 1700. The galleried top with gilt brass pierced fretwork surmounted
by ormolu brass eagles, above a thick moulded and ebonized frieze. Below,
a stepped and layered protruding central door of architectural form with
lavish decorative detailing utilizing various materials including red
tortoise shell columns with brass caps, flowing fruitwood inlays on Olive
wood ground, red tortoise shell inlay and ormolu mounts arranged around
the focal ormolu figure of Christ. The interior contains four Olive wood
drawers with decorative Satin wood stringing and fruitwood panels.
Flanking the central door are six drawers with fine flowing marquetry
inlay of fruitwood on Olive wood, ormolu escutcheons and red tortoise
shell twin panels set within ebonized mouldings, the drawers having locks
and a single key to fit and turn all locks. Below, the cabinet base of
thick ebonized mouldings supported on six brass gilt eagle claw and ball
The corresponding base of breakfront form edged with chequered Ebony and Ivory inlay and having oval and sweet heart red tortoise shell inlaid panels supported on trestle turned legs with hand forged iron support. An exquisite piece of furniture in good condition with various minor marks, abrasions and wear consistent with age and use.
This cabinet is typical of the Baroque style prevalent in 17th Century Europe which celebrated form over function. These cabinets were considered works of art in their own right, were made by the finest cabinet makers in Europe utilizing the finest materials. Consequently they were only owned by the wealthiest families who generally used them to house valuable collections.
The finest artisans of Europe congregated on Rome in the 17th Century as successive Popes commissioned the best in Europe to undertake the redevelopment of Rome. This theatrical sculptural expression of grandeur and luxury became known as the Baroque style. The artists, architects and craftsmen returned to their places of origin to develop their own interpretations of the Baroque style. Because of the influence of the style it is often difficult to identify the place of origin of furniture from this period. However, the materials used and the style of the item suggests Spain or Italy. Stylistically, the detail is similar to items from the Naples region. £22,000
Dimensions:128 cm wide at base,40 cm deep, 160 cm high to apex of eagles