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Writing table
  • Writing table
    Salvin, Anthony, born 1799 - died 1881
  • Enlarge image

Writing table

  • Place of origin:

    London (made)

  • Date:

    ca. 1835 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Salvin, Anthony, born 1799 - died 1881 (designer)
    George Morant & Son (made by)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Oak, carved and fretted, with modern damask cover on footrest

  • Museum number:

    W.5:1 to 5-1973

  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

This table is part of a suite of bedroom furniture made for Mamhead House, Devon, a house designed in the Tudor style by the architect Anthony Salvin for Sir Robert Newman Bt. Salvin was commissioned to produce designs in 1826 and building was completed in 1838. The furniture, although designed in the style of the 1830s, incorporated Tudor details from the 1580s, such as bosses, pendants, incised decoration based on blackwork embroidery, and strapwork, where patterns were formed of twisted and interlaced bands. This table is decorated with circular bosses around the frieze, pendants hang from the corners of the top, and pierced strapwork panels, which fill the end supports. It is designed for writing, with a leather top, two drawers in the frieze, and a padded foot rest on the stretcher.

On loan to National Trust Knightshayes Court.

Physical description

The table has a rectangular top covered in leather with two drawers side by side in the frieze. There are bosses and faceted lozenges along all four sides of the frieze with pendants at the four corners. The end supports are formed of pieced strapwork panels framed by square pillars with chamfered edges, decorated with bosses halfway down on all four sides, on moulded rectangular bases with circular ends. There is a shaped stretcher with a central foot rest, upholstered and covered with modern red damask.

Place of Origin

London (made)


ca. 1835 (made)


Salvin, Anthony, born 1799 - died 1881 (designer)
George Morant & Son (made by)

Materials and Techniques

Oak, carved and fretted, with modern damask cover on footrest


Width: 123 cm, Depth: 66 cm, Height: 76 cm

Historical context note

Anthony Salvin certainly designed a hall seat and a table for Mamhead, illustrated in Jill Allibone, Anthony Salvin Pioneer of Gothic Architecture, Cambridge 1987, page 29) and could have designed other furniture for the house including this table.

Descriptive line

oak writing table, carved and pierced, with Tudor motifs, the foot-rest covered in modern damask, designed by Anthony Salvin for Mamhead and possibly made by G.J. Morant, British about 1838






Furniture; Woodwork


Furniture and Woodwork Collection

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