George III Mahogany Breakfront Bookcase

10297 A George III mahogany breakfront bookcase, the fluted cornice above four glazed doors to the upper section, each enclosing five adjustable shelves, and four cupboard doors to the lower section enclosing four slides to the central section flanked by four drawers to each side. Inscribed in ink ‘I.W. Crompton Birmingham’.

Pelham Galleries, Sir Nicholas Goodison.





Height: 106.75 ins (271 cms)

Width: 96 ins (244 cms)

Depth: 25 ins (63.5 cms)                                       £38,000


The quality of timber and the construction of the cabinet work indicates a top London workshop, Chippendale, Mayhew etc. Though we are more familiar with extraordinary pieces for the most formal rooms with exotic timbers, carving and gilding, much of their business were occupied with furnishing smaller and more traditional properties for example Paxton in the Scottish borders. Fine quality, functional furniture which would require little maintenance and yet was designed to endure the hardships of life in the Country House.

This superb bookcase or cabinet is of the finest quality. Constructed from nine separate sections which slot together accurately with no movement, this piece could be moved easily from room to room, upstairs, downstairs and onto coaches for transport. The glazing panes are unusually large allowing maximum vision without numerous glazing bars to obstruct the view and ideal for displaying objects as well as books. In the base section, the centre contains the original sliding trays suitable for storing folios or unframed prints while the side cabinets are fitted with original drawers with gilt handles. A generous amount of contained storage behind beautifully figured and patinated doors.

Sir Nicholas Goodison (1934-2021) a City businessman and chairman of the London Stock Exchange during the Big Bang of 1986 was a well known supporter of the British arts and among other interests, President of the Furniture History Society for many years. He published on English barometers, one of the first books in my collection! and the work of Mathew Boulton in two editions, both essential references of their time.

George III Mahogany Breakfront Bookcase