The Wallace Collection

The Wallace Collection, A Family Collection, A National Museum, An International Treasure House
  • Chest-of-drawers
  • Unknown Artist / Maker
  • France
  • c. 1710 (originally made)
    c. 1850 (substantially remade)
  • Pinewood, ebony, première-partie Boulle marquetry of brass, turtleshell and pewter and contre-partie Boulle marquetry of brass and turtleshell, walnut (some ebonised), brass, gilt bronze, steel
  • Object size: 84.5 x 131 x 70 cm
  • Inscription: 'NA / POLE / ON' Scratched
    Inscription: 'BARRON & COs PATENT 16' Cast
  • F408
  • Great Gallery
Further Reading
  • Although this chest-of-drawers (commode) shows certain similarities to furniture stamped by, or attributable to, Nicolas Sageot (1666-1731, maitre 1706), it has been substantially remade, probably in England, in the mid-nineteenth century.
    Its top has the same design of marquetry as that of another commode in the Wallace Collection (F39) attributed to Sageot, which is taken from an engraving after Jean Berain (1640-1711). However, the marquetry of the central scene on the top of this commode has been substantially altered, and the top itself has been made more bow-fronted and rounded at the corners. The drawer fronts have also been altered, and fitted with nineteenth-century gilt-bronze frames and handles, while the carcase itself has been at least partly remade. The female masks on the corners and the lion-paw feet are also nineteenth-century castings.
    The identity of certain elements in the marquetry with the same designs on pieces stamped by Sageot does not justify an attribution of this commode in its original state to Sageot, as we know that Sageot employed outside marquetry cutters (such as Toussaint Devoye, active c. 1706-1748) whose marquetry thus appears on furniture by different cabinetmakers.