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Highboy

Highboy

1700-1720

Burled maple veneer with walnut herringbone bandings

Overall: 158.4 x 94 x 52.8 cm (62 3/8 x 37 x 20 13/16 in.)

Gift of Gordon D. Meals and Jean F. Meals in memory of Moselle T. Meals 1986.207

Description

One of the most notable developments in American furniture around 1700 was the introduction of "highboys" --- tall chests of drawers on high stands. These chests, often with bases having elaborately turned legs connected by a framework of stretchers, resemble closely English examples of the late 1600s during the reign of William and Mary. The decoration consists almost entirely of thin layers, or veneers, of richly patterned wood. These veneers were cut from burls (tumorlike growths on trees) and then carefully assembled and glued to create symmetrical patterns like those seen on the front of this highboy. The brass pulls on the drawers are typical of this period and may be original.

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