The columnar leg appears in the final decade of the sixteenth century, and is especially characteristic of the early seventeenth century. In some examples, as in the oak table in St Michael’s Church, St Albans, the leg has a quasi-classical capital. Baluster legs, turned and ringed, replaced the bulbous leg in the late seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. An elongated peg-leading help, ordinarily left plain and decorated with rings, was borrowed from Holland in the late seventeenth century.
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Modest tables for use in parlors varied in the shape of the top, which was oval, round, or octagonal. Closely comparable are the octagonal table, dated 1606, in the possession of the Carpenters’ Organization, and Elias Ashmole’s table at Oxford. In each the slender bulbous legs are fluted, and the arcading is notched when in the Carpenters’ Company’s table there is a moulded surrounding and plain cross stretcher. Folding or flap tables, in which the flap is supported by a swinging leg, had been light in make, and usually set against the wall until expected. Such tables seem in the manuscript inventory taken in 1569 of goods at Tannis, in Hertfordshire, and in that of household stuff at Howard Residence in 1598??.
Oval and round tables had been substantially employed in the seventeenth century.
Oval and round tables have been considerably used in the seventeenth century. Falstaff is circumstantially described by Mistress Immediately as “sitting in my Dolphin chamber, at the round table.” Chair tables with tip-up tops had been created as early as 1558, in which year a “round chair table” in the parlor is bequeathed by Andrew Cranewise of Bury, in his will, printed by the Camden Society.
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