Relevant categories: Bookcases
(Above Photo - Regency Breakfront Bookcase )
Even though much has been said about furniture from the Regency period, it isn't enough. In an era that ushered in the Victorian period, it is essential to get the facts right about the Regency furniture. By now, we are sure you have read a lot about chairs, tables, cabinets, and other furniture pieces from that period. For this particular article, we are going to focus on the Regency breakfront bookcase.
However, before we do, we shall talk about the Regency period and its influence on furniture design in general. Even though it isn't widely accepted, the Regency period is thought to have lasted between 1795 and 1837. However, several authorities say the Regency period was between 1810 and 1840. What everyone agrees on is the reason it is called the Regency period.
During that time, the Prince of Wales became Regent over England. He rules in place of his father, who had been incapacitated by insanity. Not long afterward, the prince was crowned as King George V, after his father died.
Designers during the Period
(Above photo - Breakfront Bookcase in Satinwood - Regency Sheraton Painted Bookcases )
The Regent and later on, King George V had a significant influence on the furniture designs of the Regency period, even though he was not a designer. Thomas Sheraton is the best known of the designers that played an important role at that time. He had come to the fore almost half a century before. Another designer worth mentioning is George Hepplewhite. Even though the Regency period began nine years after his death, his work was a significant influence on the furniture style.
Another principal designer of the Regency period is Thomas Hope. Hope's significant contribution was the introduction of elements from Ancient Egypt and Greece. Before that time, English furniture designers had mainly been influenced by elements from Rome. Hope spells out how to use Ancient Greek and Egyptian elements in his 1807 book: Household Furniture and Interior Decoration.
One of the personalities who unintentionally influenced furniture design during the Regency period is Admiral Nelson. The leader of a victorious naval regiment, Admiral Nelson, introduced ebony decorations as a symbol of mourning. Soon after his death, some designers made carvings on chairs to represent the Admiral's draped sarcophagus. He is also thought to have introduced naval elements like carved rope, dolphins, and anchors.
(Above photo - Regency Satinwood Breakfront Bookcase Painted Sheraton Antique )
So, what are some of the things to look out for in a Regency breakfront bookcase? Like other furniture from that period, bookcases had different features, including the following:
• Dense, dark wood that was mostly solid and sometimes veneered. Even though the earliest furniture pieces were made from mahogany, rosewood and satinwood were used later on.
• The breakfront bookcases would have inlays made from bronze and brass. Mostly, the inlays were found on bookcases made from ebony as well as Zebrawood. Even so, some bookcases have gilded metal mounts (accents).
Where do you go to find a useful Regency breakfront bookcase? They are available in many places, including major antique furniture auctions.
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