Q:

How do you identify a Duncan Phyfe table?

A:

One way to identify a Duncan Phyfe table is by looking at the legs. The legs of many Duncan Phyfe style tables have saber legs that flare out from a pedestal or from stretchers. They often have paw feet that can be made of brass and embellished with carved acanthus leaves.

The legs on other Duncan Phyfe tables are slender, tapered and reeded. Some end in brass casters.

Acanthus leaves can also be carved on the columns or pedestals that support the table tops. The supporting columns can also have spiral reeding or come in the shape of urns.

The tabletops can also be supported by columns shaped like lyres, which was a favorite motif of Duncan Phyfe. Sometimes, the lyres had real strings that were made of brass. Another motif was the spread eagle that also supported the table top, along with acorn drops at the corners of the table aprons.

Some Duncan Phyfe tables also have drop leaves, and some dining tables can be extended to seat more people. Much authentic Duncan Phyfe furniture also uses the best grade mahogany. The cabinetmaker did not use lighter woods as veneers but would use grained mahogany veneers with plainer mahogany.


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