With many houses these days aspiring to libraries or at the very least sizeable studies, the library table provides ample space for reading, writing and general home management. The round version of the table, or ‘rent’ table became very popular during the Regency period and well into Victoria’s reign. As the name suggests, the drawers surrounding the table were used to store tenants rent books and any payments. Regency examples follow the fine styling of the period where a central pedestal then branches out onto curving concave shaped legs. The ends of the feet often had brass tips with castors added for manoeuvrability and the top of the table was generally leather with gilding round the outside. Later Victorian examples became much heavier where many of these tables revolved on a central often heavily carved column which rested on a three cornered platform to give the whole piece stability. The table often stood in the hallway of large Victorian country houses where tenants were received and rents taken.
Earlier rectangular versions of the table were often kept within a gentlemen’s closet next to his bedroom where he would also keep his books and accounts. Eventually, libraries became larger and more generally used by all members of the family although perhaps at different times of the day. In smaller houses, the study still continued to double up as the library.
These round and rectangular antique library tables reflect the function, style and grandeur of the period in which they were made and their leather bound tops make them ideal for study use. When buying antique library tables and antique dining tables , Lancashire antique dealers will be able to advise on sizes and styles.
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