Designed in the fashionable goûut Grec of the 1760's, this exquisite encrier is mounted with precious 17th Century Japanese lacquer panels, which were undoubtedly supplied by one of Paris' powerful marchand-merciers, the class of dealers who were responsible for the invention and production of porcelain and lacquer-mounted furniture. A possible candidate is Simon-Philippe Poirier, who supervised the manufacture of various superb lacquer-mounted pieces such as the sumptous lacquer-mounted commode by Joseph Baumhauer supplied to the Marquis de Marigny in 1766 (A. Pradère, French Furniture Makers, Paris, 1989, no 240, pp. 236-237). His celebrated model of porcelain-mounted encrier was conceived circa 1760, the first recorded example is that in the Wallace Collection, which is decorated with porcelain placques with the letter-date for 1761 (R. Savill, The Wallace Collection: Catalogue of Sèvres Porcelain, London, 1988, vol II, C498, pp. 858-860). These encriers were mainly embellished with porcelain plaques, but other variants are known to exist, and include a lacquer-mounted example sold, Sotheby's, Monaco, 30 November 1986, lot 1047.