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Antique French Ormolu Mounted 'Vernis-Martin' Corner Cabinet


This is a fine and unusual 19th century French ormolu mounted mahogany "Vernis Martin" decorated, marble top corner vitrine cabinet. 

Circa 1880

Height: 63"  (160 cm)
Width: 27"   (68 cm)
Depth: 16"   (40 cm)


Vernis Martin

In French interior design, vernis Martin is a type (or a number of types) of Japanning or imitation lacquer named after the 18th century French Martin brothers: Guillaume (died 1749), Etienne-Simon, Robert and Julien. They ran a leading factory from between about 1730 and 1770, and were vernisseurs du roi ("varnishers to the king"). But they did not invent the process, nor were they the only producers, nor does the term cover a single formula or technique. It imitated Chinese lacquer and European subjects, and was applied to a wide variety of items, from furniture to coaches. It is said to have been made by heating oil and copal and then adding Venetian turpentine.