Rectangular Center Table, about 1840
Possibly Duncan Phyfe (1768–1854), New York
Mahogany (secondary woods: cherry, pine, and poplar), with gilt-brass castors, and white marble top
31 1/4 in. high, 37 3/8 in. long, 25 7/8 in. wide
With its playful use of scrolls, cavetto moldings, and other signature elements of Neo-Classical design combined in fanciful configurations, this center table represents a later, “mannerist” phase of Neo-Classicism in the United States, as opposed to the more architectural and archaeological classicism of the earlier decades of the nineteenth century.
A loose attribution to the workshop of Duncan Phyfe is based upon the exquisite level of quality displayed in the design, construction, and superiority of materials used in the manufacture of this piece. For example, every veneered surface incorporated into the complex base is mirrored on the opposite side with a veneer cut from the same flitch and displayed in matchbook fashion.