10 Apr 2021
November 18, 2010 - Filed under: Antique Chairs,Antique Desks — Harriet

Antique desks and Victorian dining chairs in Cumbria are of far more interest if they have provenance, i.e. an authenticated history. If the history is an eventful one, so much the better. This is the case with an antique cabinet about to go into auction in Scotland. Valued at £600, it is expected to make at least £2,000 – because its owner was an Edwardian prime minister.

The cabinet will be sold at Bervie Auctions in Inverbervie, Scotland. The owner is quietly pleased that, after years of anonymous Victorian dining chairs and cabinets passing through the showroom, it has at last got something of interest. Relevant interest, too, as the cabinet was owned by Sir Henry Campbell-Bannerman, who was briefly prime minister from 1905 to1908, and has links to the area.

The auctioneer admits that, since he normally handles antique desks and cabinets with no known provenance at all, it is difficult to put a value on the piece. It will be of interest to historians, and may fetch treble its estimated price as it’s unlikely to pass with null bids. Some quite beautiful early Victorian dining chairs and finely crafted antique desks have failed to meet their reserve recently – unless the item has an interesting tale to tell, people are reticent to buy.

As is often the case, it is the Campbell-Bannerman connection which has made the cabinet of value, rather than the value of the furniture itself, as he was the only Prime Minister to have died at 10 Downing Street.
If you’re searching for antique desks or Victorian dining chairs in Lancashire, Cumbrian antique dealers often have interesting examples for sale, but ask what their history is. The genealogy of Victorian antiques can be fascinating.

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