A superb Late Regency Mahogany Centre Table c.1825, English or Possibly Scottish and Possibly a Unique Commission Based on the Designs of George Smith
English / Scottish – Circa 1825
The top of finely chosen mahogany of excellent colour and figure employs a tilt top mechanism allowing the piece to be stored at the side of a room when not in use and the base of familiar tripartite form with very boldly carved winged paw feet of large scale. Aside from the use of timber of the highest quality, what makes this table so unusual is the style of the supporting mechanism for the table top.
In addition to a boldly carved central column with acanthus leaf carving, the table also employs three scrolling supports, or flying buttresses to use the architectural terminology, a feature that is both practical in terms of increasing the load bearing capabilities of the table and supremely decorative.
Tables of this precise form are not found in any of the familiar design books of the period but it is likely that the designer of our table took as their starting point George Smith’s design for a breakfast or “dejune table” from his 1808 A Collection of Designs for Household Furniture (see illustration).
Smith’s design is somewhat awkwardly drawn but incorporates flying buttresses without the central column on a table of smaller size. It is likely that the designer of our piece felt that a central column in addition to the scrolling supports was necessary when the diameter of the table top was increased and certainly aesthetically it is a much more successful design than that suggested by Smith. We have not been able to find any other examples of this precise table design and, as such, it is quite likely that the piece was produced as a special commission and may even have been designed by an architect for an important project.
This well drawn table, offered in excellent condition, has acquired a superb natural colour and patination.A fine example for any home or collection.
Width: 51 1/4 inches – 130cm
Height: 29 1/4 inches – 74.5cm
Depth: 51 1/4 inches – 130cm.