18C Irish Georgian Secretary Bookcase

PRESENTING a STUNNING 18C Irish Georgian Secretary Bookcase.

From circa 1790 and most definitely, “IRISH”.

Made of gorgeous flamed Cuban mahogany which would have been imported from the British Colonies at the end of the 18th Century.

This piece of is of IMPRESSIVE PROPORTIONS ….. it is a real STATEMENT piece and EXTREMELY HIGH QUALITY !



It has a very ‘Regency Style’ pelmet or crown with egg and dart moldings under a very straight line crown. This helps us date the piece to the very end of the 18th Century … moving into the Regency Era.

The top section consists of a 4 door bookcase, each with 3 shelving areas. It appears to retain it’s original glass, but it could likewise have been replaced at some time during it’s long life, as it is very rare to find pieces that have not suffered breakages over 200 years.

Each bookcase door still retains the original moldings to the front with a star shape above and below a central circular viewing panel.

Each section is separated by a carved and fluted roman column/pillar.

The bookcase section rests on top of the base, which consists of a beautiful central secretaire desk accessed by drop down front with working lock and key and rests on 2 pull out rests on either side. The secretary portion has a central tabernacle, with an inlaid oval satinwood medallion above another scallop shell drawer. It has 6 smaller drawers and 8 cubbies. The 2 pillars on either side of the central tabernacle are secret drawers and pull out. The curved crowns above the cubbies on either side are likewise secret drawers and pull out.

Either side of the secretary theire are 2 drawers (4 total) with a press or cupboard underneath.

Under the secretary there are 4 large central drawers.

The brasses and hardware are all original to the piece (save 2 extra hinges that have been attached to the drop down secretary to give it more support and stability.

Again, each section is separated by a turned and fluted column/pillar which replicates the 2 side pillars to the central tabernacle of the secretary.

The piece sits on 8 curved feet.


This was an extremely high quality piece when made. This is also supported by the fact that the secondary woods are also mahogany and not pine or oak for slightly lesser quality pieces of the era.


This piece is specifically identifiable as an Irish Georgian piece by virtue of the scallop shell moldings on the base side presses (see photos).

Irish Georgian furniture makers wanted to identify their pieces as being ‘Irish’ as opposed to ‘British’ and adopted the ‘scallop shell’ as their specific signature or motif. They used this motif or signature throughout the 18th Century on everything from tables, chairs, chests, secretaires, etc. Once you get into the Regency/Sheraton Era’s the ‘signature’ seems to disappear and pieces are almost impossible to identify as being specifically Irish unless marked or signed with the makers name or label.


The Georgian era is a period in British history from 1714 to c. 1830–37, named after the Hanoverian kings George IGeorge IIGeorge III and George IV. The sub-period that is the Regency era is defined by the regency of George IV as Prince of Wales during the illness of his father George III.[2] The definition of the Georgian era is often extended to include the relatively short reign of William IV, which ended with his death in 1837.

The term “Georgian” is typically used in the contexts of social and political history and architecture. The term “Augustan literature” is often used for Augustan dramaAugustan poetry and Augustan prose in the period 1700–1740s. The term “Augustan” refers to the acknowledgement of the influence of Latin literature from the ancient Roman Republic.

Link: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Georgian_era


18C Irish Georgian Secretary Bookcase.

Provenance: From a Private Dallas Collection but originally purchased in the UK and shipped to Dallas in the 1980’s.

Condition: Very good original condition. The only real restoration work appears to be the addition of 2 additional hinges to the drop down desk portion of the secretary, but this adds stability to the piece and in our opinion does not in any way detract from the beauty and originality of the piece.

Dimensions: 87″ Tall, 84.75″ Wide and 20.75″ Deep (29.25″ Deep with Secretary open)

The Base Portion is 40.5″ Tall, 84.75″ Wide and 20.75″ Deep (29.25″ Deep with Secretary open) .

The Bookshelf & Crown Portion is 46.5″ Tall, 81″ Wide and 14″ Deep at the central section.

PRICE: $35,000.00