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Chippendale period ormolu mounted parquetry yew wood commode

Biography : Pierre Langlois

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An important and exceptional quality mid 18th century Chippendale period ormolu mounted parquetry yew wood commode, probably by Pierre Langlois, having a serpentine shaped cross grain moulded top, veneered with yew wood parquetry and diagonally crossbanded in rosewood and Andaman padouk, with brushing slide below, above bombé shaped sides and front, mounted with the original ormolu corner angles, and three conformingly veneered graduated drawers with boxwood cock beading and mounted with the original ornate rococo handles and escutcheons; on a shaped apron terminating in splay feet and with the original ormolu scroll sabots and centre mount.

Note: This extraordinary commode has acquired a beautiful patina and retains all the original mounts, typical in both shape and design of pieces by Pierre Langlois. His workshop probably used metalwork by his son-in-law Dominique Jean, who shared the workshop premises. The overall outline of this outstanding piece is decidedly French in feel and emphasises the cabinetmaker's country of origin, but the construction and use of solid wood rather than marble for the top are characteristically English. The shaped drawer sides, sinuously following the commode's outline, are a sign of exceptional quality and of a very sophisticated cabinet-maker.

A similar bombé commode, with identical handles, signed by Zurn (Langlois' accomplished inlayer) and commissioned by the Earl of Shaftesbury, is in the collection of the National Trust at The Vyne in Hampshire. The mounts on the Zurn commode can again be attributed to Dominique Jean, based on recurring pattern types within the Langlois oeuvre. Several documented pieces by Langlois are in the collection at Woburn Abbey, Bedfordshire, and another, formerly at Croome Court, Worcestershire, is now in the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York.

English, circa 1765

Height: 34 in; 86 cm
Width: 48 ¼ in; 122.5 cm
Depth: 23 ½ in; 60 cm