English Sheraton Round Mahogany Dining Table Hand Made in England
A Sheraton style round mahogany English dining table cross-banded with rose wood from England. The elegant style of this table owes its existence to the famous furniture designer Thomas Sheraton who published a collection of designs beginning in 1791 in four volumes titled "The Cabinet Maker's and Upholsterer's Drawing Book". Sheraton lived from 1751-1806 and unlike Thomas Chippendale did not maintain a workshop where furniture was actually made. Therefore there is no signed Sheraton furniture and everything attributed to Sheraton is based upon the faithfulness to his original designs. Because over six hundred furniture and cabinet makers subscribed to the publication of his book his influence was particularly widespread to almost immediate effect. Please notice the beautiful lightness of the lines of this table with the round top that sits upon a symmetrically balanced base. The circular top of this table features the best of the exotic woods being imported into England from its colonies, namely mahogany, rosewood and ebony as none of these timbers were available locally like oak or pine. The outer band of the top is a wide border of highly figured rosewood notable for its figured grain and great contrast between light and dark. The central area of the table actually is comprised of separate pieces of mahogany veneer chosen for the fantastic movement of the grain and the way it appears when laid in pie wedge shaped sections across the entire surface. Interestingly there is a very slender ribbon of ebony placed between the rosewood and mahogany that gives a slight demarcation between the two timbers. While it is a subtle detail the use of a third wood adds an element of unexpected luxury. The edge of the top features a horizontal reeded surface that captures the light in an intriguing fashion and gives the top a sense of being thicker than it actually is in person. The base of the table is known as a "birdcage" base because of the four turned columns that stand upon a square platform. Each of the four columns has a slightly tapered column with ring turning and the slight change in profile from narrow to slightly larger adds a pleasing sense of scale. The platform is supported at each corner with a splay leg set at a fourty five degree angle that sweeps down to the floor in a dramatic line. The upper edge of each leg is embellished with the same reeded design seen on the edge of the top and again was chosen for its unique ability to capture light as it plays across the uneven surface. All four of the legs stand upon brass casters that totally encapsulate each end. These brass casters served to protect the wood from errant kicks when sitting down to a meal while the reflective quality of the brass meant that the firelight and candlelight illuminating the space alerted people to where the end of the leg was located and of course the wheels enabled the table to be moved easily around the room. Tables with this large of a circular shape did not appear until the end of the eighteenth century because until this point in time there were not enough dining rooms in existence that could accommodate a table of this scale. These tables were originally made for more intimate gatherings where a certain amount of informality was desired as there is no head or foot to the table and everyone is seated in a rather egalitarian manner. The size of this table means it will easily seat eight to ten people depending upon the scale of the chairs and the ability to see all the guests and hosts at one time lends to convivial conversation. In order for the table to be moved with a minimum of fuss the top is bolted to the base with four large brass screws that are simply removed and then tightened after the table is in place. The gorgeous quality of the timbers used to make the table beautifully showcase the skill of contemporary English cabinet making.
72.00" w x 72.00" d x 30.00" h
182.88cm w x 182.88cm d x 76.20cm h