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antiques advice from John Bly

Item No. 1123

The Purefoy Cabinet. This a most fascinating Italian walnut writing desk of the late 17th century. It has a fall-front and an interior fitted with small drawers and an upper compartment. It is line engraved throughout with mythical beasts and other emblematic designs. The cabinet was acquired by Mrs Elizabeth Purefoy of Shalstone in Buckinghamshire in the 1740\'s and adapted for her by the addition of a cabriole leg stand and hinged lid to form a cabinet to contain the Purefoy Letters. These are acknowledged to be among the primary records of life in upper middle-class English Society during the first three quarters of the 18th century and are used constantly as reference by historians internationally. The original letters are in the Buckingham Museum in Aylesbury. Provenance:- Acquired in 1944 by private treaty by the previous owner, a collector and connoisseur, from the last direct descendant of Mrs Purefoy and retained until its Sale to John Bly.

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Circa 1740

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Five generations