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Writing desk

Writing desk

  • Place of origin:

    Vishakhapatnam, India (made)

  • Date:

    ca. 1875 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Unknown (production)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Sandalwood, veneered with ivory, engraved and highlighted with lac, with silver lock, hinges and mounts

  • Museum number:

    LOAN:ROYAL.461

  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

  • Image in copyright

This writing desk was made at Vizagapatam, a leading centre of wood and ivory work, and the most important city in the maharaja's state. Following the collapse of the East India Company in 1857, India was governed directly by the British Government. In order to cement relations between the Crown and India's princes and people, Albert Edward, Prince of Wales (later Edward VII) was sent on an extensive tour of the subcontinent.

Throughout his visit the prince received local princes, who offered him tokens of homage and friendship. This portable writing desk was one such gift, and was probably presented by the Maharaja of Vizianagram.

Physical description

Portable writing desk of sandalwood, veneered with ivory, engraved and highlighted with lac, with silver lock, hinges and mounts.

Place of Origin

Vishakhapatnam, India (made)

Date

ca. 1875 (made)

Artist/maker

Unknown (production)

Materials and Techniques

Sandalwood, veneered with ivory, engraved and highlighted with lac, with silver lock, hinges and mounts

Marks and inscriptions

HONI SOIT QUI MAL Y PENSE
Loan Collection
of H.R.H. The Prince of Wales.
India, 1875-76.
No. 948. Desk, of ivory &
sandalwood.
Vizianagram

Dimensions

Height: 13 cm, Width: 44.5 cm, Depth: 33.5 cm

Object history note

The desk was presented to Albert Edward, Prince of Wales (later Edward VII) on his tour of India in 1875-6, possibly by the Maharaja of Vizianagram. It has been on loan from the Royal Collection since 1912.

Bibliographic References (Citation, Note/Abstract, NAL no)

Jaffer, A. Furniture from British India and Ceylon: a catalogue of the collections of the Victoria and Albert Museum and the Peabody Essex Museum. London: Victoria and Albert Museum, 2001. ISBN 1 85177 318 5,p.217-8,pl.64.

Categories

Furniture; Woodwork

Collection code

SSEA

Qr_O114440
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