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Antiques Considered - July 2, 2014

This French three-drawer table is one of a pair belonging to a writer from Northern Virginia. The woods appear to be mahogany and a type of elaborately grained maple. The top, which does not show well in this photograph, is finely inlaid marquetry in a floral pattern. The owner writes that they have been in her family for many years.

Judging solely from the photographs, the tables seem to be French reproductions of early nineteenth-century pieces. They are factory-made, and show a high level of sophistication with the marquetry tops, although the brass galley trim is solid and not reticulated, as on fancier examples.

I suspect that they date from the 1920s, and if so, in today’s market should be worth $300 each. The possibility also exists that they are American-made, and if so, should be worth a third less. They closely resemble two with marble tops that we have in our shop that are priced accordingly.

French pieces remain popular, particularly in these forms that fit in well with other styles. Earlier period pieces in this style, namely from the late eighteenth or early nineteenth centuries, in authentic Louis XV or Louis XVI motifs, sell for upwards of five figures, particularly those that are signed or can be attributed to recognized cabinetmakers. We recently sold an 1810 French diminutive table at auction in New York for a client in Florida that brought over $4000.

I suggest looking on the bottoms and backs of the tables, as well as of the drawers, to try to find a maker’s label or stencil with the country of origin. This style underwent a resurgence in the 1870s and in the interwar years, and a name would help to pinpoint the age.

Henry Lane Hull and his wife Lisa operate Commonwealth Antiques and Appraisals, Inc. at 5150 Jessie duPont Hwy. in Wicomico Church, VA.  Write to him at P. O. Box 35, Wicomico Church, VA 22579 or e-mail questions to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..">This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..  
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