Bershaw book-rest, music stand


Category Music stands
Maker SHAW, Bertram
Marks and inscriptions The Bershaw
Period 1900-present
Place of origin England
Description Book-rest or music stand
Materials Wood, metal
Dimensions Weight 784 g
310 mm x 220 mm x 70 mm (folded)
910 mm x 220 mm x 70 mm (unfolded)
Condition Working condition
Price (EUR) €75.00
Ref 126


Bershaw book-rest, music stand

This marvellous wooden book-rest was designed by Bertram SHAW, hence the name ‘BERSHAW’. It has an adjustable angle position for resting a book or piece of sheet music. The book-rest is foldable and can be made much longer, and it features two metal page holders. Two slats at the base of the book rest open out to give two possible angled positions. At the centre of the item, is the original gilt trade label The Bershaw BOOK REST, MADE IN ENGLAND. It has signs of use for its age, but has been cleaned and fitted with new red felt.

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Bertram SHAW, who appears to have been based in Brighton, England, even obtained patents for this invention in several countries. In 1928, he obtained a patent in the USA for book-rests or note-book holders that could rest on tables and were adjustable and foldable.  In the image, Fig. 1 shows the book-rest open and Fig. 2 shows it closed. In fact, the idea was that the book-rest was wide enough when fully opened to rest on and bridge the arms of an armchair.

Fast forward to today… It could be used as a place to rest a book, sheet music or even a tablet or iPad. Use it with a piano or perhaps for a recipe book while cooking. It’s even possible to rest it over the bath for that ultimate bath-time reading session!

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