|1.||a set of shelves, usually also with cupboards or drawers, for storing or displaying dishes, etc|
|2.||(US) a chest of drawers for storing clothing in a bedroom or dressing room, often having a mirror on the top|
|[C14 dressour, from Old French dreceore, from drecier to arrange; see |
|1.||a person who dresses in a specified way: a fashionable dresser|
|2.||theatre a person employed to assist actors in putting on and taking off their costumes|
|3.||a tool used for dressing stone or other materials|
|4.||(Brit) a person who assists a surgeon during operations|
|5.||(Brit) See window-dresser|
a cupboard used for the display of fine tableware, such as silver, pewter, or earthenware. Dressers were widely used in England beginning in Tudor times, when they were no more than a side table occasionally fitted with a row of drawers. The front stood on three or five turned (shaped on a lathe) legs linked by stretchers. Horizontal planes such as the dresser's top and drawer fronts were decorated with matching molding. A low backboard, often with narrow shelves or drawers, was introduced about 1690, and, soon afterward, a decorative shelf beneath the main drawers was added. Shelves without backs were added later to display English delftware. Dressers of this type became a common feature of the middle-class kitchen up to the 19th century.
Learn more about dresser with a free trial on Britannica.com.