Founded in around 1815 by Jean Beurdeley (d. 1853), the company's reputation was principally established under the latter's son, Louis-Auguste-Alfred (d. 1882), who took over from his father in 1840, opening a large shop in the Pavillon de Hanovre, on the corner of boulevard des Italiens and rue Louis-Legrand. Known chiefly for the refinement of its ormolu, whose mercurial gilding and hand chasing makes it difficult to distinguish from late 18th century work, Beurdeley exhibited and won awards at all of the major International Exhibitions during the second half of the 19th century. The success and reputation of the firm continued under Alfred Beurdeley (d. 1919), who took over from his father in 1875. The company's workshops finally closed in 1895 and Beurdeley's stock was sold over a number of auctions. A number of these sales were conducted by Galerie Georges Petit of Paris. Two catalogues of the collection were published in 1895 and sales were held between 6-8 March and again on 27-28 May.
The original model of the present bureau plat is by Bernard van Risenburgh (BVRB) and is characteristic of his oeuvre in the 1730s, although bureaux plats are quite rare within his work. Only three other similar models are known and these have formed part of famous collections, such as those of Wildenstein, Akram Ojjeh and of the Duc de Richelieu (1696-1788), the latter now in the Metropolitan Museum of New York as part of the Wrightsman Collection.