The whatnot is essentially a set of shelves raised on corner posts and with castor’s to make it mobile. Whatnot’s appeared between 1790-1800. Gillows of Lancaster record examples as early as 1790, usually they were made of mahogany or rosewood.
Whatnots are an occasional piece of furniture intended for the display of items which Victorians used to surrround themselves with ie china, bronze, glass or stone etc. Having a drawer in a whatnot also adds to the value
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