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Antique Boxes in English Society
1760 -1900
Writing Boxes
Writing Boxes




A Brass Bound Mahogany Writing Box Circa 1840.
A writing box in flame  mahogany brass bound and with shaped escutcheon and plaque. The surface which retains its original finish is beautifully patinated.

17.7" by 9.6"

Circa 1840.

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Detail showing the escutcheon which is inspired by the palmette motif.

Detail of the top. There is an insignificant hair crack to the left.

The writing surface retains its original leather.

Detail of the fine embossing on the leather.

Detail showing the expected wear and the hinge and brass countersunk wells which enable the flaps to remain flat. 

Inside showing the criss cross tapes for holding notes.

Detail of pen tray.

Top paper compartment.

The secret drawers open with a most unusual mechanism. The lock is first locked and then a brass rod is inserted. This triggers a lever which springs open the panel in front of the drawers. 

There is also a side drawer which opens when the brass rod is pulled up.

Detail of hand cut dovetails and handle in pulled up position. The cabinet maker's scribed lines marking the dovetails are still visible.

Other side with handle.

For the historical context of this writing box read the relevant part of Antigone's Online Antique Box Book. If you click here you will go there.

We have written a highly  illustrated book on Antique Boxes and Tea caddies  which is being  published by  Schiffer Books USA.  If you would like to be advised when the book is in print please email us at

  © 2002 Antigone Clarke and Joseph O'Kelly