The columnar leg seems within the final decade of the sixteenth century, and is particularly characteristic of the early seventeenth century. In some examples, as within the oak table in St Michael’s Church, St Albans, the leg has a quasi-classical capital. Baluster legs, turned and ringed, replaced the bulbous leg within the late seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. An elongated peg-top support, often left plain and embellished with rings, was borrowed from Holland within the late seventeenth century.
Small tables to be used in parlors different in the form of the top, which was oval, round, or octagonal. Carefully related are the octagonal table, dated 1606, in the possession of the Carpenters’ Firm, and Elias Ashmole’s table at Oxford. In both the slender bulbous legs are fluted, and the arcading is notched; while in the Carpenters’ Company’s table there is a moulded surrounding and plain cross stretcher. Folding or flap tables, by which the flap is supported by a swinging leg, have been light in make, and infrequently set against the wall till required. Such tables seem in the manuscript inventory taken in 1569 of goods at Tannis, in Hertfordshire, and in that of household stuff at Howard House in 1598??.
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Oval and spherical tables had been much used in the seventeenth century.
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Table tops had been incessantly lined with a “carpet” or “fabric” of Turkey work, colored leather-based, or other materials. The nice oval table with folding sides within the “Nice Rooms or Hall subsequent the Banketing House” had its cover of crimson leather bordered with blue gilt leather, lower to suit it, as are the table covers depicted by Abraham Bosse, the place the cloth, which hangs almost to the ground, is tied or buttoned on the corners.
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