These tables form a grouping of New York furniture made by Phyfe and his
contemporaries employing long, delicate reeded legs, which are very
successful, because of the lift that is created with consequent
lightness and airiness. There are many variations of the form, and
attached we show 7 known examples.
This table is in perfect
condition, with its original casters et al. It is an elliptical shaped
top, also called a “cloved top”. The mahogany figuring is
magnificent, see details below. These tables usually have a split
running down the middle, which, to me, validates the table as a right
piece, as the veneer top shrinks differently than the pine substrate.
This is usually filled with wax and is only an issue to those not family
with the form. Phyfe created this type of veneer top because solid
tops most often warp either up or down with the seasons, no matter how
well the wood was seasoned. Phyfe sought to correct this by having a
veneer applied over solid pine the ends of which are “breadboarded” with
pine running in the opposite direction.
Examples of this form
are at the Metropolitan Museum in New York as well as other exhibitions
related to the best of Classical America.