H 31 inches W 79 inches (with slides open 117inches) D 43 ½ inches
A large Napoleon III ebonized partners’ desk by Racault, the rectangular leather inset top with copper stringing and a matching book slide at either end, each side with one long and two short drawers above two pedestals enclosing drawers, cupboards with satinwood slides and pigeon holes, decorated throughout with bronze or bronzed metal edging and elaborate mounts comprising female terms, panoplies of war and tied ribbons. Signed Henri Racault. French, c1860.
Footnote: Antoine Krieger was one of the best known and most prolific high-quality furniture makers in 19th century Paris. At its peak his company employed over 800 workmen who consistently won medals at expositions and salons from the Great Exhibition (London) of 1851 to the start of the first world war. Between 1826 and 1935 the firm, usually called simple ‘Kriegers’, had fourteen different official names, as partners came and went. One of Krieger’s daughters married Henri Racault whose name appears in various combinations from 1855-1870. See Christopher Payne, ‘Paris Furniture, the luxury market of the 19th century’, China 2018, pp.414-418 for an outline history of Krieger, Damon et Cie.
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