Bernard Molitor, maître in 1787
The form of the present bureau was possibly influenced by similar models first conceived by David Roentgen in the 1780s. Stylistically, however, it can be compared most closely to the work of Bernard Molitor, for example à bureau a cylindre stamped by Molitor and dated to circa 1788-1792 and another bureau attributed to Molitor and dated circa 1790-1800 (see U. Leben, Molitor:Ebéniste from the Anciene Régime to the Bourbon Restoration, 1992, p. 191, cat. nos. 71A and 71B respectively). Some ormolu elements also appear on other pieces by Molitor such as the escutscheons on a commode in Japanese lacquer acquired for the future George IV of England (ibid., p. 87, fig. 75) as well as on a mahogany commode of a similar sombre style dating to the Revolutionary years of circa 1790-92 which also has paterae mounts (ibid, p. 28, fig 15). It is interesting to note that the the drapery molding appears on several pieces by Jean-Henri Riesener and also on a comparable secretaire stamped by both Riesener and Molitor (sold Hôtel Drouot, 2 December 1994), who had collaborated on several occasions.