Inspired by the works of André-Charles Boulle, the present bureau plat is based on a preparatory design attributed to the celebrated ébéniste, dated to the early 18th century and today in the collections of the Musée des Arts Décoratifs (723 B2). The drawing exhibits a similar silhouette, elaborate inlaid decoration and satyr-form angle mounts to the present desk. Owing to Boulle’s continuing popularity, furniture makers created works in his style into the 19th century including Paul Sormani. Following Sormani’s death in 1877, the firm continued to produce works of art under the direction of his wife, Ursule-Marie-Philippine Bouvaist, and son, Paul-Charles Sormani, signing 'Vve . P. Sormani & Fils,’ the inscription on the lockplate of the present desk.