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Antique English Arts and Crafts Secretary Desk, England circa 1875

The bold carving seen in this antique English oak secretary desk from England circa 1875 gives a powerful visual impression. The Arts and Crafts influence is clearly seen in the use of the "Green Man" motif across the entire façade. Used for centuries in architecture across Europe the Green Man is symbolic of the relationship between Man and Nature. The stylized figure head is always depicted with an abundance of lush leafy patterns carved into the surface and appears mainly on oak furniture in England and France. The large expanse of the closed writing slope seen in this piece features a great overall pattern of deeply incised carving in contrast with flat areas for a distinctly graphic effect. The leafy foliage seen in the border is repeated in the lower four drawers which each have the face of the Green Man in the centre for use as a drawer pull. Unusually there is a cabinet door in the base on the right side that fully opens to provide storage. In contrast to the organic swirl of the drawer fronts the door has a potent diamond lozenge surrounded by lavish large scale motifs. The apron at the base has an undulating pattern while the sides have a simple plinth base that extends along the floor from front to back. The lopers (the moveable supports on which the writing slope rests) are accessed by pulling them out away from the secretary and pushing them back in as needed. When the writing slope is fully open the original leather writing surface is revealed with a great appearance of the passage of time as it is worn on the left hand side. There is a series of four open storage spaces as well as two drawers with a symmetrical shaped border above them. With ample writing and storage space this was a piece used for daily correspondence where now it may be kept closed and admired for its skillful workmanship while the drawers and cabinet are filled for easy access. 34 1/2" deep when the writing slope is open 28 1/2" high when the writing slope is open for a chair to be pulled up.

# ES126

DIMENSIONS

37.00" w x 18.00" d x 42.00" h

93.98cm w x 45.72cm d x 106.68cm h

The bold carving seen in this antique English oak secretary base gives a powerful visual impression. The Arts and Crafts influence is clearly seen in the use of the "Green Man" motif across the entire façade. Used for centuries in architecture across Europe the Green Man is symbolic of the relationship between Man and Nature. The stylized figure head is always depicted with an abundance of lush leafy patterns carved into the surface and appears mainly on oak furniture in England and France. The large expanse of the closed writing slope seen in this piece features a great overall pattern of deeply incised carving in contrast with flat areas for a distinctly graphic effect. The leafy foliage seen in the border is repeated in the lower four drawers which each have the face of the Green Man in the centre for use as a drawer pull. Unusually there is a cabinet door in the base on the right side that fully opens to provide storage. In contrast to the organic swirl of the drawer fronts the door has a potent diamond lozenge surrounded by lavish large scale motifs. The apron at the base has an undulating pattern while the sides have a simple plinth base that extends along the floor from front to back. The lopers (the moveable supports on which the writing slope rests) are accessed by pulling them out away from the secretary and pushing them back in as needed. When the writing slope is fully open the original leather writing surface is revealed with a great appearance of the passage of time as it is worn on the left hand side. There is a series of four open storage spaces as well as two drawers with a symmetrical shaped border above them. With ample writing and storage space this was a piece used for daily correspondence where now it may be kept closed and admired for its skillful workmanship while the drawers and cabinet are filled for easy access. 34 1/2" deep when the writing slope is open 28 1/2" high when the writing slope is open for a chair