solid walnut, Gothic style buffet cabinet is loaded with carved details that
would excite any Gothic-lover as well as holding all of the table settings and
Thebase of the cabinet has two doors and two drawers. The face of the drawers is
the familiar linen-fold design, and they have solid brass, original handles
that are beautifully detailed. The two doors have Gothic arched fenestage on
their fronts, that recall the windows of France's magnificent Gothic
cathedrals. There is a single shelf accessed behind the doors that runs the
width of the cabinet. The doors are framed by two twisted and fluted columns in
the gothic manner, that support the top as well.
Abovethe base's top, is the intermediate, supporting section. Again there are two
twisted and fluted columns, that this time have floral capitals. In the center
under the top is a carved acanthus leaf motif, with stylized acanthus leaves
that become downward, pointing Gothic arches.
part of the cabinet has a pair of doors that mimics the lower pair, except that
the right-hand door has a center linen-fold panel with a gothic arch, that
makes it about 12" wider than the left-hand one. Just below the
architectural crown moulding at the top, is another acanthus leaf motif
comprising a frieze the width of the top.
Whatattracted us to this cabinet was not only the intricacy and refinement of the
hand-carved elements but the rich, dark patina of the walnut.
Thiscabinet is part of a suite including a small dining table and six chairs, all
from Mercier Frères, a Paris cabinetmaker and design atelier whose virtuosity
and craftsmanship have survived in this outstanding buffet. Mercier Frères was
founded in 1867, and closed its doors in 1967. They produced furniture for the
Spanish crown and the Persian royal family among many distinguished clients.
Their nameplate, is attached to the inside of the top, right-hand door of this
Jacqueline, Le Mobilier Français du Moyen Age à la Renaissance, Editions d'Art
Monelle Hayot (Saint-Just-en-Chaussée, 1988); Thirion, Jacques, Le Mobilier du
Moyen Age et de la Renaissance en France (Editions Faton, Dijon, 1998);
Viollet-le-Duc, Eugène, Le Mobilier Médiéval (Georges Bernage, editor)
(Editions Heimdal, 2003)