Art/ Collection/ Art Object

Cylinder Desk and Bookcase

Attributed to Duncan Phyfe (1770–1854)
Made in New York, New York, United States
Mahogany, mahogany veneer, satinwood, gilded gesso with yellow poplar, white pine
95 3/8 x 48 1/8 x 24 in. (242.3 x 122.2 x 61 cm)
Credit Line:
Purchase, The Horace W. Goldsmith Foundation Gift, in memory of Berry B. Tracy, 1985
Accession Number:
1985.236a, b
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 726
The exacting craftsmanship, rarely seen roll-top mechanism, and first-quality woods indicate that this bookcase was certainly made by one of the finest furniture establishments in the United States. One particular feature—the spiral-fluted ellipsoids above the tapered legs—relates this cylinder desk and bookcase to a labeled Duncan Phyfe work table in the Winterthur Museum collection. The writing board is mechanically activated and moves forward as the roll-top, or cylinder, front is lifted.
Mr. and Mrs. Edward Vason Jones, Albany, Georgia, until 1985
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