Embellished in the 1770s French 'antique' fashion, the writing-table is closely related to one at Syon House, Middlesex, which was almost certainly commissioned from the Golden Square firm of John Mayhew and William Ince for Queen Charlotte's Lady of the Bedchamber, Elizabeth, Duchess of Northumberland (d. 1776) (R. Edwards, The Shorter Dictionary of English Furniture, London, 1964, p. 563, fig. 29). The present example can also be attributed to Mayhew and Ince, as related tambours appear on the façades of pier-commode-tables that were executed to their design (the commodes, now in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, are discussed in L. Wood,Catalogue of Commodes, London, 1994, p. 215, figs. 205-206). A related ormolu-mounted marquetry tambour writing-table, originally the property of Lady Sybil Grant, daughter of the 5th Earl of Rosebery, was recently with Mallett & Sons and illustrated in their catalogue The Age of Matthew Boulton: Masterpieces of Neo-Classicism , London, 2000, pp. 13-14. Another desk of this pattern, almost identical to that at Syon, was sold anonymously, in these Rooms, 19 April 1990, lot 76 and another is at Temple Newsam House, Leeds (C. Gilbert, Furniture at Temple Newsam House and Lotherton Hall, Leeds, 1978, no. 430).