William Gomm: A George III secretaire dressing chest

england , circa 1765

In the manner of William Gomm

A very fine and rare George III Chippendale period mahogany secretaire-dressing chest of exceptional scale and quality. The shaped serpentine cross-banded top with acanthus carved leading edge, with canted corners carved with impressive scrolls and further scrolling acanthus leaves, the top drawer opening to reveal a fitted secretaire with baize lined writing area and pigeon holes and small drawers, above three further full length graduated drawers, all with gilt bronze handles in the Rococo taste. Overall of very good colour and patina throughout.


Stock number

Height: 39.37 in (100 cm)
Width: 51.18 in (130 cm)
Depth: 25.98 in (66 cm)
A very closely related chest of drawers, attributed to William Gomm, was sold Christies, 5 July 1990, lot 149 from the collection of The Lord Leigh, Stoneleigh Abbey, (previously sold 3 May 1962, lot 54)

This commode was exhibited at Temple Newsman House, Leeds in 1951 as part of the exhibition 'Thomas Chippendale (1718-1779): A Festival of Britain Exhibition' (ex. no. 88). At the time, Margaret Jourdain, a leading Chippendale scholar, attributed the commode to Thomas Chippendale due to its exceptional craftsmanship and design similarities to Chippendale's Director.

The bureau can now be attributed to Gomm due to more recent literature and scholarship on Gomm's work and designs.
Comparative Literature:
L. Boynton, 'William and Richard Gomm,' The Burlington Magazine, vol. 122, no. 927 (June 1980), pp. 395-402
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