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Antique Tables - Item 3308
Italian Renaissance Table
 

Item 3308 - Renaissance Executive Desk or Table

Item 3308 Italian Renaissance Table
Table Length 75, Width 38½, Height 31 (in inches)
Height to from floor to bottom of the table top 25½
Wood Walnut
Country Italy
Date Circa
Description

This richly sculpted Italian dining table easily sits six, possibly even eight persons in comfort.  Its broad expanse ensures ample room for table settings plus candelabra, centerpieces and whatever else lends itself to an elegant dining experience reminiscent of that romantic interlude in Tuscany.
Ideal as it is for dining, it also embraces perfectly the recent trend where
  executives opt for a table and credenza (see Item 3307) in their office rather than a desk in the traditional sense.
Its origins are in the Renaissance Tuscan tables of the sixteenth century called a vaso for the curving, vase-shaped design of the verticals connecting the stretcher and supporting a broad top.
  Ultimately, the a vaso design stemmed from the largest but simplest of 15th century tables, the refectory table used in monasteries.  The highly decorative designs embodying the a vaso table became popular a century later when wood became more scarce and so tables were lighter with more emphasis on refined motifs such as the scroll, rosette, and palmette border.  The large rosette forming the center of each of the end panels is intricately carved and in deep relief, compared to the surrounding design of circlet and graceful, curving acanthus leaves.For another dining table featuring a large rosette, see Item 3202.
While the original 16th century version of this table would have been made from solid walnut, this table is not entirely solid and some portions are impiallacciatura.
  We hesitate to call the technique "veneer" because it is far thicker than the paper-thin sheets that pass for veneer in today's furniture manufacture, and is found only where the horizontal and vertical surfaces are unadorned.  Like solid wood, it boasts a warm and pleasing patina.  The thickness of the impiallacciatura can be seen in two places in the top where there are nicks of long-standing (see photos).  In addition, there is a crack in the stretcher, which is solid wood, as shown in the photo below.  None of these has been fixed because they do not threaten the table's structural integrity, and out of concern that repair would impact negatively the value of the table as an antique.

Reference

Antiquités et Objets D'Art 10, Le Mobilier Italien (Editions Fabri, Paris, 1990); Costantino Fioratti, Helen, Il Mobile Italiano (Giunti Editore, Firenze-Milano, 2004); Rousseau, Francis, Le Grand Livre des Meubles (Copyright Studio, Paris, 1999).

Uses

As mentioned above, we find more and more folks opting for antique tables and cabinets in an office instead of a traditional desk with drawers.  But this table was designed with dining in mind and would still serve well in that capacity, or as a library table.
 

Please note that it is difficult to photograph a table this large without some distortion caused by flash, leading to the color being inconsistent among the photos.  Ultimately, the table is a rich, medium walnut color.

3308-angle-side

3308-leg

3308-scroll
 

3308-foot-front

3308-foot-side
 

3308-side-panel-detail
 

3308-top
 

3308-top-detail
 

3308-left-base
 

3308-base-crack
 

3308-side-detail
 

 3308-angle

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