A George II Satinwood Marquetry Giltwood and Composition demi-lune Side Table

English, circa 1780


The semi elliptical top veneered in finely figured West Indian satinwood, cross banded in kingwood and tulipwood with a marquetry border of flowers and ribbons. The giltwood base with a frieze applied with paterae and husks tied with ribbons. The central oval tablet painted “en grisaille” on a dark blue background, depicting Ceres the Roman goddess of fertility and agriculture being tended to by her servants. The four turned and fluted legs headed by beads and acanthus leaves.

The central painted medallion depicts Ceres the Roman and Greek goddess of agriculture. Similar to Bacchus, she tends to be associated in the 18th century dining room. Ceres was the Roman Goddess of agriculture, grain and motherly love. She was the daughter of Saturn and Ops, the sister of Jupiter, and the mother of Proserpine.

Height: 33 ¼ in (84 cm)
Width: 48 ½ in (123 cm)
Depth: 23 ¾ in (60.5cm)

Robert Cunninghame Graham (1737-1797), either at Finlaystone House (sold 1862), Gartmore House (sold 1900) or Ardoch House and by descent to:
Lady Patricia Cunninghame Graham (on loan at Culzean Castle, 1982-2017).

This table was in the collection of the Cunninghame Graham family, and on loan to Culzean Castle between 1982-2017. It was probably originally acquired by Robert Cunninghame Graham, d. 1797, who was a well-known Scottish politician and poet. Interestingly, Robert is now remembered for a poem ‘If Doughty Deeds my Lady Please,’ which was later set to music by his great-great grandson and Sir Arthur Sullivan. Robert Graham inherited a number of estates throughout his life and twice changed his name in accordance with his inheritances. At his death he was enormously wealthy with estates located in Perthshire, Dunbartonshire, Renfrewshire, Lanarkshire, as well as owning a Jamaican plantation.

More recently, whilst belonging to Lady Patricia Cunninghame Graham, the table was on loan at to the National Trust for Scotland at Culzean Castle from 1982-2017.

Ref 891

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