Bowfront Chest of Drawers in the Sheraton Taste, about 1815
Eastern Massachusetts, probably Boston, possibly Thomas Seymour (1771–1848)
Cherry, mahogany, bird’s eye maple, striped maple, and ebony (secondary woods: pine),
with original gilt-brass lion-head pulls
37 5/16 in. high, 43 5/8 in. wide, 23 7/16 in. deep
RECORDED: Judith Gura, The Guide to Period Styles for Interiors from the 17th Century to the Present (New York: Bloomsbury, 2016), p. 155 illus.
Richly ornamented across its front with large panels of bird’s eye maple set within borders of striped maple, this chest of drawers is a dazzling and colorful essay in woodworking that ultimately derives from the designs of Thomas Sheraton (1751–1806), which were made available through the publication of his The Cabinet-Maker and Upholsterer’s Drawing-Book (1793). Enhanced further by broken out corners on the top that reflect the reeded corner posts and, ultimately, crisply turned feet below, and cross-banding of striped maple around the upper and lower edges of the composition, the chest displays an exemplary level of refinement that could prompt an association with Boston cabinetmaker extraordinaire Thomas Seymour, who was, along with his brother John, the subject of an important exhibition at the Peabody Essex Museum, Salem, Massachusetts, in 2003.