This unique and elegant walnut veneer commode-form buffet is from Southern Germany, circa 1760.
Originally produced as a three-row chest of drawers, a previous owner had the commode repurposed into a two-door buffet. This transformation took place over 100 years ago, and the quality of the work is very good. For example, look the subtle diamond shaped sections of veneer located in what would have been the center of the drawers. This would have originally been a series of 3 key-hole escutcheons. Along the sides of the interior, we see evidence of old drawer rail attachments. Without these clues, it would be easy to believe that the piece was intentionally built like this from the beginning.
Behind the doors are two full-length fixed shelves, which match the incurved facade of the piece. Both doors have matching brass lock plates in the style of a curled leaf, however only the door on the right has been cut for a key (key is not included). The left door has a set of interior latches for security, one at the top and one at the bottom. Each door also has three vertically arranged brass drawer pulls that are ribbons with fruited garlands. The doors are fitted on a pair of brass hinges.
Another unique aspect is the shape of the buffet. The doors have angled shoulders and an incurved center portion where the doors meet. The same shape can be seen in the cavetto molding of the top and the base. This style was prevalent in the mid to late 1700’s in Southern Germany, but also Switzerland, and Northern Italy. The commode has parquetry veneer along all facets, with the front consisting of a series of square and rectangular panels. Both sides have one large rectangular parquet design, while the top has two curved rectangles. The cabinet sits on four large bun feet.
Our 18th century German cabinet retains a beautiful color and patina, and can be used in a variety of locations around the house, from the kitchen or dining room to the bedroom.
CONDITION: Wear commensurate to age and use with minor nicks, rubs and age separations. Small repair to veneer on one door, with some infill along back edge. While they are still antique, the brass hardware is likely not original. Lower right pull is different and backplate inverted