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Cape Dutch Military Chest

South Africa

20th Century


This piece comes from South Africa, in a style originating from the Netherlands, and is classified as “campaign furniture”, being used for military travel. This furniture is more streamlined than its predecessors, since the need for highly mobile chests become valued after the early 1900s, specifically when the British learned high immobile they were in comparison to the ‘Boere’ in South Africa. Typically these pieces are made from teak, mahogany, or camphor, but rarely oak, as they had to be moved often. The inlays are simple and plated, serving more for practical purposes, then for decoration. The craftsmanship is elegantly simple, keeping in with the grain having a smooth finish, and a sturdy base to protect the valuables during war-time.

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