Roll-top desks appeared in the mid-eighteenth century. The first models – such as those delivered by Jean-François Oeben and Pierre Garnier – featured a slatted wooden panel. Later designs, illustrated by this piece by François Gaspard Teuné, had a two-part cylinder top, part of which could slide into the back compartment. The model that came to dominate was the one with a single cylinder.
This writing desk reflects the simplification of Rococo curves, which lost their extravagance, becoming flowing lines that were set off by marquetry trim.