19th Century Chemist's Desk
A superb and unique example of an original and untouched countertop desk belonging to a Victorian chemist or doctor. It is full of hundreds, if not thousands, of original paper bottle labels and other ephemera and accessories associated with dispensing medicines. There are also many handwritten notes and newspaper cuttings with important information on stuck below the lid of the desk.
The desk itself has a sloped front for writing on and a hinged top opening to reveal a large storage space at the top. Below this are two drawers which are divided up into various small sections, each containing a quantity of labels with instructions or descriptions on. Some of these include "One tablespoon to be taken three times a day in water", "for external use only" and "the gargle to be used as directed" as well as labels with space to write names and instructions on and also some with the prescribing doctors name on it. These labels would be stuck to bottles of medicine as they were prescribed to patients.
It has been untouched for many years and I imagine is exactly as it was left when the doctor wrote his last prescription. It is a perfect time capsule for a collector and a superb display piece or prop.
Overall it is in good condition. The desk has its original paint which has worn and faded to a lovely crackled finish with the most wonderful patina. The hinges are in good order and the drawers open smoothly. There is an old split in the lid which has been repaired and is still strong and sturdy. There are general signs of age and use and some small chips out of the wood but nothing detrimental. The contents have generally been well preserved although many of the labels have yellowed and curled with age and the glue on some of the stacks has hardened.
Width : 19" (48cm)
Depth : 17" (44cm)
Height : 10" (26cm)
It is a difficult piece to explain in words and the best description comes from the photos so please look at them all carefully and if you have any questions please ask.