A Superb c.1800 English Walnut & Pine Tavern Table


Origin: English
Period: Early Nineteenth Century
Provenance: Unknown
Date: c.1800-20
Length: 50.5 inches
Width: 23.75 inches
Height: 30.5 inches

Having a walnut one piece boarded top on stained and painted pine x-frame legs with iron bolt fixings united by a central stretcher survives from the turn of eighteenth to nineteenth century England.

The condition is very good. The one-piece top has a extremely fine and desirable patination and a deep rich colour whilst the surfaces of the x-frame legs are all original and bobbled, most likely, from being fire-side in a tavern. There are five lozenge shaped insert repairs which date to the nineteenth century to the top and a host of other character marks that one would associate with heavy tavern use. We have only waxed the top of the piece.

The 18th and 19th centuries saw a massive rebuilding of pubs in reaction to changing tastes and the opening of new establishments to meet new demand in industrial and suburban areas.  By the end of the 18th century, the saloon was introduced to the pub. It was a kind of a luxury room; people could enjoy other entertainment as well as drinking for a higher price or an admission fee. Strictly speaking, inns provided rooms for travellers, taverns provided food and drink, while alehouses simply dished out beery substances. A card room or a billiards room was also popular. By the early 1800s Gin Palaces mushroomed in major cities of Britain, and caused serious health and moral problems in England. These drinking lairs gave birth to in numerous crimes and the deathly epidemic of alcoholism. In response to the Gin Craze, the government passed the Beer Act of 1830, which allowed a new set of premises called the Beer Houses to sell alcohol. Anyone could brew and sell cider or beer in his household after paying a certain rate, but only cider or beer.

With masses of historical charm, this table has a thousand tales to tell… mines a pint.