Chippendale’s Original Drawings at Harewood House
Thomas Chippendale’s drawings maintained in the Harwood House Archive reveal a tripod table leg design almost identical to the present Chippendale dumb waiter. The tripod legs project horizontally from their joints, to descend with steep inclines before tapering off to elegantly scrolled feet.
Patina and Proportion – 2 Essential Qualities
This exceptionally fine Georgian mahogany Chippendale dumb waiter exhibits an outstanding surface patina gently built up over years of use. It is in major part due to the exceptional quality of the 18th-century mahogany that the patina and condition remain at such a superb level. This beautifully drawn Chippendale dumbwaiter has perfect proportions and remains in perfect condition with flat trays, even after 270 years.
Historic Context – From the Dining Room to the Library
Dumbwaiters of this form are first seen in the first half of the eighteenth century, circa 1740. They were particularly associated with the dining room and would stand adjacent to the dining table holding cutlery, plates, dishes, glasses ready for the butler to use. As the meal progressed, the dumbwaiters use changed to also hold cut glass lead crystal tazza’s and dishes with sweets, nuts, and candied fruit.
Early nineteenth-century Regency dumb waiters were also made for the library, either individually or as pairs. Dumbwaiter tables which, are both practical and, when as good as this, exceptionally elegant; remained popular throughout the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. A three-tier Chippendale dumb waiter in fine mahogany and similar turned columns stands in the Calke Abbey collection. Two other notable mahogany Chippendale dumb waiters are held at Croome Park, Worcestershire and Saltrum, Devon, all with similar turned columns and tripod bases. Today,
Today, dumb waiters are perfect for their original dining room purpose and also for displaying cherished objects and family photographs. This dumbwaiter is an exceptional example and Nicholas Wells Antiques is delighted to offer it for sale.