The etymology of desk and chair: The word ‘desk’ is derived from a Latin word called ‘desca’ which simply means a table used to write on. In older version of Latin it was referred to as ‘desco’. A wooden desk chair is therefore a furniture piece that is used primarily used for academic purposes like reading and writing.
The historical importance of the chair:
Have we not heard terms such as the chairman and the chair person? In ancient history, the chair was provided only to a person of high rank or gentry. The system of using a chair by itself has always been in relationship with its usage by the head of the family in a home or the head of the tribe.
The traditional uses of the desk:
During the medieval times, when the pursuit of academics was beginning in a lot of civilizations, there is proof that the first pieces of furniture that were designed were mainly for writing.
Much later but before the printing technology came into existence, books and manuscripts had to be written by hand and this necessitated the invention and perfection of the writer’s desk. The oldest desks that are preserved have place to keep ink bottles and writing instruments. The chairs used with these desks were made of real wood and had comfortable armrests.
The metamorphosis of the desk in modern times:
After the printing technology became popular, desks were no longer needed to write manuscripts but well read people used them for reading and drafting. In the 16th century, this piece of furniture saw its slimmer version that occupied lesser space on the top and more drawers underneath. By 17th and 18th century, they became more ornate with advancements in wood working tools. Today, the desks have metamorphosed into a combination of computer and paper work.
The chairs used with these desks:
The desks had special chairs that were built along with them or the chairs used were borrowed from other pieces of furniture. Wooden desk warranted use of wooden chairs for aesthetic purpose. The harmony was maintained since the material was same.
Today the basic structure of the chair may be made of wood but the chairs have become more plusher and comfortable thanks to the recent research in the field of Ergonomics.
It is believed that it was only in the late 1800s that chairs came to be popularly used by everyone. In the wake of the industrial revolution, several machine made chairs were possible to be produced and they were cheap enough for anyone to buy and use them.
The ergonomic requirements of a wooden desk chair:
- The wooden desk chair must be comfortable for the height and the weight of the person seated. That is to say that when the person sitting upright leaning his back parallel on the backrest then his feet must rest flat on the floor.
- The chair may have soft upholstery if the wood used is strong and tempered, there may be no real need for it to be cushioned or padded.
- A good desk chair has comfortable arm rests for the person working to rest his arms on.
- Modern improvements like addition of castors to its legs may help the person working to reach things that are close by using the swivel in the chair
The wooden desk chair whether intricately carved or not is a classic piece of furniture. There is a certain royal look associated with it which does not come in the fiber plastic chairs that are manufactured today.