History of the Credenza
A welcome addition in the office, kitchen or dining room, the credenza is a broad term for a variety of pieces. Today, the word credenza most often refers to a piece functioning as a desk. An attachable hutch frequently accompanies the desk credenza, providing shelving and storage capacity.
The term credenza, however, also refers to a piece of furniture functioning as a buffet. Credenza is Italian for credence or truth. It bears its name well in the manner of a buffet table. In history, the dining quarters of a king, pope or nobleman employed a credenza. Food placed on it was taste tested for poison prior to serving. Hence, the term credence/credenza was a place for the moment of truth.
Since the time of taste-testers, the credenza broadened its purpose and style. A credenza may include any long, table-height piece of furniture used in a buffet, display, bookcase or desk capacity.