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Georges-Alphonse Jacob-Desmalter (1799-1870)

Roll top desk (bureau à cylindre)

1825

Oak, satinwood and purplewood with gilt bronze mounts | 125.0 x 118.5 x 65.8 cm (whole object) | RCIN 11107

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This desk was made by Georges-Alphonse Jacob, the third generation of the dynasty of furniture makers, beginning with Georges Jacob (1739–1814).  It is made of oak veneered in satinwood and purplewood and mounted with ornaments in gilt bronze. The desk was intended to furnish George IV’s Bedroom at Windsor Castle.

Georges-Alpjonse Jacob originally studied architecture and was a pupil of the neoclassical designer,  interior decorator and architect, Charles Percier (1764–1838). It was only in 1825, when his father retired that he took over the family furniture-making business. This piece of furniture represents one of the first pieces made in the family workshops after he took control of the firm. ‘Jacob Desmalter et Cie’ was the name under which the family supplied furniture. Their client list included the Emperor Napoleon and numerous other leading European families.