Chinese Export Davenport

Chinese Export Davenport


A camphor wood China Trade Davenport.

The Davenport works as most do with the desk section sliding forward to sit over the knees, a cupboard to the right enclosing drawers with a secret 'desk tidy' compartment popping out above. It also has a slide board to each side with ebony knobs and a green leather skiver to match that to the sloped area of the desk. Lifting the slope up reveals a large area to store papers with two rows of interior drawers to the back. There are two to the top and three dummy drawers below. The secret desk tidy sits behind these dummy drawers and is released from its sprung catch by pulling the knob handle to the bottom right drawer. The desk tidy has a pen tray running its full depth with dividers for three inkwells and a lidded compartment next to it.

This Davenport is a little unusual in design to the drawers to the side cupboard. Whereas you might expect four drawers, there are three with an open compartment to the top. The board to this compartment is on tongue and groove joints and is made to slide out to access any papers sat on it easier. The drawers have skeletal campaign handles.

The Davenport is decorated with two rows of ebony reeded moulding between the desk and cupboard sections and inlaid ivory stringing. The quarter rounded corners have a simple rectangle design which is echoed to the corners of the sliding desk section. The panels to the side, front and door have an inverted axe head design to the corners linked by a line of stringing running parallel to the edge. The turned feet are typical of Chinese campaign furniture.

This piece of furniture would either have been bought by a Westerner passing through one of the Chinese ports or might have been brought back for sale by an East Indiaman Captain looking to supplement his wage. It's a good looking piece and its small but practical nature is just as useful today as when it was first made. Mid 19th Century.

Closed Size is given.


Height 85.06 cm / 33 "
Width 55.86 cm / 22 "
Depth 55.86 cm / 22 "

Mid 19th Century.




Chinese Ports


China Trade

From Chair To Cannon

Restoration to locking brass stay bar to the desk lid. Lock replaced to desk top. Key for cupboard.


Registered as exempt under the Ivory Act 2018