Ormolu and porcelain mounted marquetry desk by Donald Ross

By Edwards & Roberts (British, founded 1845) | Ross, Donald (British, 1830-1916)


This exceptional marquetry adorned desk brilliantly showcases Ross' craftsmanship, other examples of which are held in the Victoria & Albert Museum in London.


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This fine writing desk is by Donald Ross, one of the leading furniture producers working in Victorian Britain, and was retailed by Edwards and Roberts. The desk is wrought from mahogany veneered with satinwood and rosewood marquetry and is mounted with ormolu and a porcelain plaque.

The desk features a rectangular top finished with marquetry of rosewood and satinwood in a trellis layout, with the top encompassed by a moulded ormolu frame. The apron below is similarly adorned, with the mahogany panels again decorated with Ross’ idiosyncratic trellis and dot marquetry. The apron contains two frieze drawers, separated by an ormolu cartouche containing a porcelain plaque painted in the Rococo style, with each drawer mounted with an ormolu handle. The desk is supported on four tapering square-profile legs, each set to the edges with ormolu foliate mounts, and each leg terminating in an ormolu foliate sabot.

This writing is one of the finest examples of Ross’ work and the model has been reproduced as tables de milieu, tables ambulantes, and secretaires. A pair of Donald Ross side tables, similarly decorated with his distinctive 'dot & trellis’ marquetry inlay, is held in the Victoria and Albert Museum in London.

One drawer is stamped 'Edwards and Roberts'.

The desk can be paired with a matching desk by Ross, available here.


Artist / Maker
By Edwards & Roberts (British, founded 1845), Ross, Donald (British, 1830-1916)
Country of Origin
Date of Manufacture
c. 1890
Late 19th Century
Mahogany, Marquetry, Ormolu (Gilt Bronze), Porcelain, Satinwood
Blue, Brown, Gold, White


75 cm / 29.5 inches
108 cm / 42.5 inches
64 cm / 25.2 inches


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