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Commode

Commode is a French-derived name for a chest of drawers, usually applied to antique examples. Such pieces are seldom purely functional.

Their drawers are often graduated, narrowing in depth from bottom to top. The carcase is sometimes veneered in an exotic wood and may be either inlaid with marquetry, embellished with mounts in gilt bronze (ormolu) surmounted by a marble or hardstone top or a combination of all these.

Some of the more expensive antique examples on the market are either stamped by a French ébéniste (furniture maker) or may be attributed on stylistic grounds to a well-known British or Continental cabinetmaker. 


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Stamp denotes Parisian origin

29 April 2019

This highly elaborate chest of drawers decorated in boulle marquetry technique with a variety of different figural and foliate motifs featured in the furniture session of a sale at Hampel (29.5% buyer’s premium) in Munich on March 28.

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Pick of the Week: Marvellous Maltese marquetry at Gloucestershire auction

02 October 2017

Maltese furniture commands a premium – and not simply because it appeals to a committed group of island collectors.

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Commodes channel auction interest in Guernsey

10 April 2017

Decorative furniture from the 19th century was in keen demand at Guernsey auctioneers Martel Maides (17.5% buyer’s premium) on March 15-16 including a pair of satinwood demi lune commodes.

Mahogany commode at Woolley and Wallis

Going, Going, Gomm: mahogany commode bid to £28,000

14 October 2016

This early George III mahogany serpentine dressing commode with distinctive carved decoration forms part of a group thought to have been made by the London cabinet-maker William Gomm (c.1698-1780).

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Commodes take £110,000 in Gloucestershire

04 February 2015

Exceptional pieces of antique furniture play by quite different rules to the more standard items when it comes to price performance.

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Mahogany commode with more than a hint of Chippendale

26 January 2015

A fine quality mahogany commode with a blue-chip provenance proved the star lot at Lawrences’ latest furniture auction in Crewkerne.

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Golden age pieces make their mark

23 July 2014

A recent sale at Bamfords of Derby included two outstanding pieces of Chippendale period rococo furniture, both consigned by a local lady who had inherited them from her father.

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New high for English furniture at £3.35m

13 December 2010

SETTING a new auction high for English furniture, this commode of c.1770 was knocked down for £3.35m earlier this month.

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An object lesson in embellishment

23 August 2010

THE Viennese mahogany commode, pictured here at the top, has undergone a remarkable transformation since it sold along with its companion pair at auction in 1993 as part of the Thurn and Taxis sale.

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Commode at £155,000 in Nottingham

14 July 2008

Consigned by a local private source, this late Louis XIV contre partie boulle commode c.1710 sold for £155,000 at Dreweatts in Nottingham on July 10.

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£160,000 Langlois commode crowns Bolney Lodge sale

02 October 2006

This early George III kingwood parquetry and marquetry commode attributed to Pierre Langlois proved the highlight of the £812,413 Bolney Lodge collection sold by West Sussex auctioneers Toovey’s on September 20.

Cool £400k for Craven commodes

19 December 2001

Furniture of all nationalities has been much in evidence in London over the past few weeks as late November/early December is traditionally one of the two periods in the year when the London rooms offer their best English and Continental fare.

Elegant 4ft 3in (1.3m) wide early Georgian mahogany two-door commode

01 May 2001

UK: This elegant 4ft 3in (1.3m) wide early Georgian mahogany two-door commode stole the show at Phillips’ furniture sale in London on Tuesday, April 24, when it sold for £500,000 to London dealers Jeremy Ltd.

George III demi-lune commode

20 September 1999

UK: THE autumn sale season got properly under way last week with three sales in the ‘Country House’ vein. Offered from Vost’s at Tattersalls in Newmarket on September 16 were the contents of Badlington Manor, the property of the retired stock broker Mr Keith Heathcote.