Relevant categories: Bookcases
Are you looking for a bureau bookcase? If so, then you should walk into a London antique shop or auction and make your intentions known.A common feature from centuries ago, bureau bookcases are beautiful, multi-functional cabinets with both a bookcase and desk or bureau for writing. Thus, a single furniture piece combines several functional items.
(Above photo - Antique George II Bureau bookcase )
Even though it is rare to find bureau bookcases in homes today, they can become centers of attraction when placed in home offices or living rooms. The distinctive style stands out from anything else in the room.
A typical wooden bookcase would have a large wooden writing bureau with a bookcase with a glass door on top. As such an antique bureau bookcase will stand out in terms of being more versatile than a smaller cabinet or standard sideboard. In most cases, the bureau bookcases you get will have been restored to what it looked like when new. When you get it, the bureau case will be good enough to hold your books and other belongings in conformity with the interior design in your home.
What Does A Bureau Bookcase Look Like?
Unlike the sideboards and desks produced today, bureau bookcases can be tall. So, before buying one, you should put into consideration, the effect it will have on the rest of your room. If your home or office is tiny, you have no reason to buy a massive oak bureau bookcase. In a large living room, such a piece of furniture is great when placed in a corner so as to provide extra storage.
However, not all bureau bookcases are tall. Some are designed to be low-lying units that sit side by side. These can be put in a room just like you would a sideboard. If you have a small office or room, don’t look further than the low-lying bureau bookcases.
What Are The Origins Of The Bureau Bookcase?
In 17th-century France, the first bureau was designed as a simple flat table with a couple of drawer under the top. It was referred to as a bureau plat. During the reign of Louis XIV, the bureau transformed into one with a kneehole. On each side of the bureau were several tiers of drawers and one drawer just above the knees.
(Above photo - Antique bureau bookcase in mahogany )
The bureau first appeared in England towards the end of the reign of Charles II. However, not many people understood the real meaning of bureau. Some thought it was just about any desk with drawers. It was not until the early 18th-century when a bureau with several drawers under a slopping writing flap appeared. Subsequently, bureaus of that time were designed with a bookcase on top. The bookcase would have a single or double doors which were glazed at times.
Within a few years, the bureau bookcase became popular across the whole of Europe. Designers often fitted these pieces of furniture with several compartments and bureaus. Soon, the central compartment of the bureau bookcase would feature mirrors with the side compartments forming wings. It is this kind of bureau bookcase you are likely to find in antique shops today.
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