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Chest of drawers

1690-1710
Origin: America, Massachusetts, Boston
OH: 36 1/2"; OW: 40"; OD:22 1/4";
white oak, white pine, paint
Gift of Mr. & Mrs. Miodrag R. Blagojevich.
Acc. No. 1976-437
Four drawer chest of drawers with molded rectangular top with applied geometric molded ornamentation on the drawer front surrounded by half-round molding. The top and bottom drawers have different designs and sizes than the two center drawers. The ends are wainscoted with early molding surrounding graduated and stepped molding. There is a very finely developed molded edge to the top with molding below and a very strongly developed base molding. The whole chest is supported on early ball feet in the front and continuous stiles in the back. The chest is framed in white oak with pine panels and drawer fronts as well as the top. The applied moldings all appear to be pine. The drawer sides are white oak with pine backs and pine bottoms.
Label:The concept of a chest of drawers rather than a chest or a chest over drawers came to Boston with immigrant European cabinetmakers in the late seventeenth century. More specialized than a generic chest, the form provided drawers in which to organize the storage of textiles, clothing, and valuables. A number of similar Boston chests of drawers were decorated with raised geometric moldings. Some were originally painted with colorful faux-grained decoration in imitation of finer cabinet woods such as burl walnut. Traces of such graining remain on this chest.