Antique desks are a functional and decorative piece of furniture, a historical writing platform for by-gone communication and a reminder of an age when letter writing was the main means of correspondence. They are practically useful to store pens, paper and books, sometimes-antique desks will have built in bookcases and often they have a large surface area for writing and reading.
Whether you are looking for an antique desk for an academic, professional capacity or for personal use you will find an array to choose from including a flat desk, a roll top desk, a school desk, a lap desk, a ship captain desk, a knee-hole desk, a bookcase dropdown desk, a drafting table, a travel desk, a davenport and escritoire. An antique secretary is slightly different to a desk in the sense it has a fold down flat surface as opposed to a permanent flat surface.
Illustrations of desks first appeared in medieval times and appear to have been made and used for the purpose of reading and writing. Early desks were often very large and heavy, the structure was big to allow for space when copying books by hand. Integral to the design were slots and hooks, which would have been used for bookmarks and writing paraphernalia. During the Renaissance period desks became smaller in size and drawers featured increasingly as craftsmanship improved. Earlier desks also tended to have sloped tops as they were mainly used in monasteries and universities.
An antique roll top desk is a worthy investment, as they are in such short supply. Due to this they are highly sought after and a valuable antique piece. Antique roll top desks are also useful as paperwork can be stored privately. You may possibly find some unique vintage roll top desks that are equally attractive.
During the Victorian period and early 19thC quality woods were more easily available. Due to this veneers were cut thicker meaning they tended to have nice figuring and even the drawers and their linings were made of expensive woods such as cedar, oak and mahogany.
In particular a mahogany antique desk will fetch a high price due to its strength and durability. Also of note is an antique desk with its original leather writing surface, these surfaces are a rarity and are in demand by antique collectors.
The majority of antique desks may have been subject to restoration work but this need not deter you from purchasing such a piece, as long as the work carried out is in keeping and sympathetic to the antique desks style.
An antique desk sits beautifully in the home, its impact dependant on its size, from a stately heavy larger desk to a delicate Victorian flat desk. They tell a story in themselves with their unique locks, partitions, drawers, cubbyholes, pigeonholes, inkwells and carvings. The marks and signs of usage on an antique desk is just an added feature of the charm.
744 items available.
A beautiful writing table with a single drawer at the front.
Made around 1860 and in good condition. With very attractive brass decoration to the top, brass detailing all over ...
Fine quality deep carved oak pedestal desk .
The desk is in great condition with fine deep hand carving ,one side of the desk has three drawers to the top with ...
Victorian Burr Walnut Writing table with Inlaid lift up lid stationary compartment for pens, ink well envelopes etc, with a red leather gold tooled writing surface, with two drawers standing ...
Small Greenman Oak desk, c.1880
Nine smooth running drawers
Black writing surface
First class order throughout
This beautiful and rare piece stands on four finely carved Dolphin shaped legs. The top section has three working drawers to both sides and the piece still retains it original ...
19th Century Anglo-Indian hardwood bookcase desk, the base having two pedestals on turned feet, each pedestal with a heavily carved and pierced fret door which opens to reveal three drawers, ...
Antique Oak Twin Pedestal Desk. Antique solid oak writing desk, large rectangular top with green leather skiver, pair of pedestals with three drawers in each pedestal with brass drawer handles.
This table is gorgeous! For use as either a writing table or a dressing table, this item has a wonderful walnut colour and patina. There is a small shaped black ...
This is a 19th Century Victorian antique mahogany 3 drawer writing table which has ring turned legs with original brass castors, 3 mahogany lined drawers with turned knobs. The green ...
This is a pretty 19th Century Victorian antique walnut shaped writing table which stands on shaped carved legs with a ring turned stretcher and turned and carved uprights. The kidney ...
For sale is a Victorian mahogany pedestal desk, with a tan leather inset top, above three drawers. The top fits onto two round cornered pedestals, raised on a plinth base. ...
This is a stunning quality kidney shaped centre table in burr walnut with fabulous marquetry and Parquetry Inlay using exotic woods, also with brass mounts to all four legs, it ...
This is an Antique Davenport
By famous makers Bulstrode Cambridge
Made out of walnut wood
Very ornate with hand carving
Writing slope has green leather with gilt leaf edge
With 4 dummy drawers
This is a Scottish Victorian campaign ironbound escritoire which is made out of country oak. It is hand carved with thistles and leaves. It sits on a stand. The interior ...
This is an antique double pedestal walnut leather topped desk with writing slope. - TODM
The people at Art Metal knew how to build stuff to last and this single pedestal desk survives in fantastic unspoilt condition having avoided the dreaded strip and polish session. ...
A good quality antique Victorian mahogany writing table or desk with 2 drawers. In mellow well-figured mahogany it stands on elegant turned legs. With an over sailing top above two ...
This single pedestal desk was made in France in the 1930's it has a cabinet to the left and a single lockable drawer to the right, both locks are in ...
Here we have an Antique - Victorian Aesthetic hall table - desk
· Mahogany top over birds eye maple effect base
· 2 drawers with fine hand cut dovetail joints
· Furnished ...
Here we have a Victorian clerks desk
· Turned gallery rail
· Open flap desk top
· Bobbin turned legs with decoratively turned stretchers
Here we have an Antique style yew wood ladies desk
. It has leather top and 9 drawers
· 8 small drawers to top
· Leather top with gold tooling
Here we have an Antique oak roll top twin pedestal desk
· Tambour roll top with working key
· Top opening to 2 small drawers and multiple pigeon holes
· Base with ...
This is a 19th Century Georgian antique mahogany cylinder desk by Gillows of Lancaster.
The desk has two drawers, a slatted mahogany tambour rolling lid, a slide forward writing surface, nine ...
This beautiful Victorian antique pedestal desk has a rectangular moulded top with a burgundy tooled leather writing insert above a central drawer over knee hole. Each pedestal has four graduating ...
Offered for sale is this burr walnut writing table. Burr walnut having a leather tooled writing scribe, brass gallery, 2 draws with brass handles standing on well carved cabriole legs ...
Offered for sale is this antique writing desk in burr walnut having a raised gallery back, olive green tooled leather writing scribe, central draw with 3 draws either sides. The ...
A truly superb pedestal desk, made from Walnut with excellent tight Burr Walnut. The Burr Walnut is on all 4 sides so it can be free standing in a room, ...
Fine antique french freestanding inlaid marquetry kingwood desk with a middle storage section with a long lid decorated with a lovely ormolu gallery dividing a pair of lifting lids with ...
A beautiful walnut ladies writing desk from the mid Victorian period. Very shapely and decorative, with ormolu mounts and mouldings throughout combined with boxwood inlays and stringing. Recently repolished and ...
A superior quality solid oak roll top desk manufactured by H.L.L. Of typical 'S' shape roll design and with a multitude of fitted drawers and pen slides. The main drawers ...
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