19th C Military Campaign Camphor Wood Lap Desk


United Kingdom

DC Member since 2013
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19th C Military Campaign Camphor Wood Lap Desk

Quality 19th Century Military Campaign Camphor Wood Roll Top Writing Slope
This extremely good quality Chinese export camphor wood metamorphic writing slope / lap desk dating to circa 1850 was made for sea captains and military field officers for use on campaign.
Constructed of solid camphor wood being brass bound to all edges with brass military carrying handles the lower drawer opens which activates the tambour roll top to slide back revealing a lift up fitted interior with tambour sliding doors. These doors open to a pigeon hole interior with locking door which opens to a small drawer inside. To the top there are lidded compartments and an original recessed pull-out mirror.
The ebony strung writing slope, which has a central brass cartouche, opens to reveal a later black leather tooled writing surface which lifts forwards at the rear to reveal a storage area with a very special secret hiding place which when using a fine nail releases a brass spring to access three drawers behind the removable panel.
Both the drawer and the locking door to the pop-up section have working keys and the whole piece is in excellent condition having been restored using traditional methods. The fall is not warped and all joints are sound which is rare for an item this which would have been on so many travels with changes in heat and atmospheres.
An exceptional good quality Military lap desk / writing slope with a variety of different actions in excellent condition with a lovely warm camphor wood colour

Width: 21 inches - 53.5cm
Height: 11 1/4 inches - 28.5cm
Depth: 16 3/4 inches - 42.3cm


  • H: 28.5cm (11.22in)
  • W: 53.5cm (21.06in)
  • D: 42.5cm (16.73in)



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Telephone: +44 (0)1438 869819



Whempstead Road
United Kingdom


Now into the second generation, Loveday antiques is run by Alexander Loveday.

From the early days until 2012 Loveday Antiques had three major showrooms running, located at Chelsea, Ascot and Islington, but sensing the major shift towards the online side of the business in January 2013 Alexander decided to close both Chelsea and Ascot and concentrated more on working via the internet and website as traders, interior designers and the public's buying habits changed.

The internet now allows us to trade globally 24/7, whilst keeping our overheads down and passing on these savings to our clients.

The start of 2014 has also led to more change, relocating the original showroom in London from The Furniture Vault in Camden Passage, from where we have traded for over 40 years, to our new showroom conveniently located in Hertfordshire within the A1 and A10 areas, just off the M25.

The new showroom is just North of London and only a 20 minute train journey from Kings Cross, London to Stevenage, with just a short 10 minute drive from there.  We are can easily arrange to pick clients up from the station as long as you let us know when you are coming.  If you are driving, it is 10 minutes from both the A10 and A1m.


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