Gendered lapdesks. These two Victorian desks date to the mid nineteenth century. The desk on the left is a handsome solid mahogany, brass-bound gentleman's desk, which contains secret drawers (the image to the left shows this desk opened). On the right is a fine quality lady’s papier maché desk, inlaid with mother of pearl and painted with flowers and gold accents. Photograph by Michael Marx. Text by Catherine Golden.

Related Material


Golden, Catherine J. Posting It: The Victorian Revolution in Letter Writing. Gainesville: University Press of Florida, 2009.

Great Exhibition of the Works of Industry of all Nations, 1851. Official Descriptiveand Illustrated Catalogue. By Authority of the Royal Commission. In Three Volumes. London: Spicer Brothers, 1851.

Harris, David. Portable Writing Desks. Buckinghamshire, UK: Shire Publications Ltd., 2001.

Last modified 7 June 2010