Antique Victorian Satinwood and Harewood Half Moon Painted Console Table 19th C


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Object Description

This is a truly magnificent Victorian hand-painted satinwood and harewood console table, dating from the late 19th Century.

This remarkable console table has a stunning crossbanded demi-lune top profusely hand-painted with fabulous decoration comprising of superb floral and foliate ornaments all in the manner of Angelica Kauffman. The centre features a wonderful grisaille painting of a classical scene – a maiden gracefully bathes the feet of a seated gentleman, both dressed in classical attire.

It has an equally exceptionally decorated frieze with splendid ribbon tied swags, and it is raised on four elegant square tapering legs.

This console table is truly unique and is guaranteed to bring beauty and charm to your home for many years to come.

In excellent condition having been beautifully cleaned and polished in our workshops, please see photos for confirmation.

Dimensions in cm:
Height 75 x Width 92 x Depth 45

Dimensions in inches:
Height 29.5 x Width 36.2 x Depth 17.7

Angelica Kauffman, RA (1741 – 1807)
was a Swiss-born Austrian Neoclassical painter who had a successful career in London and Rome. Though born as “Kauffmann”, Kauffman is the preferred spelling of her name in English; it is the form she herself used most in signing her correspondence, documents and paintings.

While Kauffman produced many types of art, she identified herself primarily as a history painter, an unusual designation for a woman artist in the 18th century. History painting, was considered the most elite and lucrative category in academic painting during this time period. Under the direction of Sir Joshua Reynolds, the Royal Academy made a strong effort to promote history painting to a native audience who were more interested in commissioning and buying portraits and landscapes.

Despite the popularity that Kauffman enjoyed in British society and her success as an artist, she was disappointed by the relative apathy that the British had towards history painting. Ultimately she left Britain for the continent, where history painting was better established, held in higher esteem and patronized.

The works of Angelica Kauffman have retained their reputation. By 1911, rooms decorated with her work were still to be seen in various quarters. At Hampton Court was a portrait of the duchess of Brunswick; in the National Portrait Gallery, a self-portrait. There were other pictures by her at Paris, at Dresden, in the Hermitage at St Petersburg, in the Alte Pinakothek at Munich, in Kadriorg Palace, Tallinn (Estonia).

is a hard and durable wood with a satinlike sheen, much used in cabinetmaking, especially in marquetry. It comes from two tropical trees of the family Rutaceae (rue family). East Indian or Ceylon satinwood is the yellowish or dark-brown heartwood of Chloroxylon swietenia.

The lustrous, fine-grained, usually figured wood is used for furniture, cabinetwork, veneers, and backs of brushes. West Indian satinwood, sometimes called yellow wood, is considered superior. It is the golden yellow, lustrous, even-grained wood found in the Florida Keys and the West Indies.

It has long been valued for furniture. It is also used for musical instruments, veneers, and other purposes. Satinwood is classified in the division Magnoliophyta, class Magnoliopsida, order Sapindales, family Rutaceae.

The term harewood or airwood originally described a type of maple wood with a curled or “fiddleback” figure, used to make the backs of stringed instruments. In 17th-century England it was imported from Germany.

In the 18th century airwood came to be used by marqueteurs; for most artificial colours they used holly, which takes vegetable dyes very well, but airwood was employed either in its natural off-white state or stained with iron sulphate to produce a range of silver and silver-grey hues. The reason that airwood was preferred to holly for this colour was that it gave a metallic sheen or lustre, while holly dyed by the same process turned a rather dead grey. The use of airwood in this way meant that by the 19th century it was associated specifically with that colour, and at the same time name gradually changed from airwood to harewood.

In a relatively short space of time the action of the chemicals, together with natural oxidization, turns harewood brown, sometimes with a greyish or greenish hue, which is how the wood now appears on old marquetry. The notion that harewood and other coloured woods can be produced by injecting dyes into the roots of trees appears to be an old wives’ tale of some antiquity, perhaps propagated by marqueteurs to protect their trade secrets.

Our reference: 09788

Object Details

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