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Antique French Arbalette Front Painted Chest Two Drawers circa 1770

A striking antique French arbalette front painted chest of drawers from France circa 1770. Please enlarge the photographs to see the details that make this such a fine example of eighteenth century craftsmanship. The entire façade of this chest of drawers has an elaborate profile known as an "arbalette" after the French word for crossbow. Please notice that the top edge of the chest has the shape as well as each of the two drawers as well as all the separate pieces of timber that make the front. All of this required a high level of skill to create a shape that was not only consistent but possessed pleasing proportions as well. The paint has been refreshed of course as original paint was made of entirely natural materials. By using a painted finish the original cabinet maker understood how the play of natural light, including firelight and candlelight, would dance across the front of the chest with an enchanting combination of light and shadow. Because this was a fine and valuable piece of furniture it was equipped with handles on each side so it was easy to transport from room to room as desired. In addition this chest was created for a patron who used it to store valuable goods which is why it has not only two handles for weach drawer but also a lock and key.
# 013GFMA59


35.50" w x 19.50" d x 33.50" h

90.17cm w x 49.53cm d x 85.09cm h