Console tables such as this one were designed to sit against a wall. They came into use during the first decade of the nineteenth century and their designs were heavily influenced by archaeological discoveries. The lion or leopard had been used for thousands of years, a popular motif with kings, princes, patricians, pretenders and potentates, because it symbolised strength and power. They had been very popular on Roman furniture, revived by late neoclassical designers, including Dutch born London based connoisseur and designer Thomas Hope, who featured them in his 1807 publication Household Furniture and Interior Decoration. English tables made in in the Thomas Hope style would generally have a platform below the legs, as we see here, whereas the Irish equivalent are often made without the platform bases.
Although presented in somewhat chequered condition this is a difficult to find piece of Regency finery and makes for a beautiful table.