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Furniture by one of the greatest cabinet-makers of the eighteenth century

Jean-Henri Riesener (1734–1806)

Chest of drawers c.1774–80

Oak, purplewood, satiné, tulipwood, stained woods, burr wood, ebony or ebonised wood, box, gilt bronze, brèche d’Alep marble | 94.9 x 166.9 x 59.7 cm | 2477 |

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Although archival sources have not yet identified the eighteenth-century owner of this chest of drawers, a number of chests of drawers of this shape by Riesener were supplied to the Crown and some heads of administrative departments. It may have been made for Madame Sophie, sixth daughter of Louis XV and Marie Leszczyńska. The pictorial marquetry panel in the centre of the chest of drawers renders in outstanding detail an allegory of Strength and Abundance, including a quiver of arrows, a flaming torch, a bow, a cornucopia and a laurel wreath.