Masterfully crafted with rich, hand-carved decorative elements, this stunning console table is from France, circa 1850. As with many period Louis XVI pieces, the console base is made en acajou massif (in solid mahogany), as the soft wood has relatively straight grains, making it a great wood for carving. The wood also has natural red tones which add character to the artistic motifs.
A lovely hand-cut breche violette marble tops the console. The stone is over 1 ½ inches thick and has cavetto molding on three sides, including the arch-shaped front. Breche violette is unique in that it has many color variations; our marble is cream with purple, brown, and gray veining with green and gold inclusions.
The focal point of the mahogany base is the large mascaron surrounded by a floral wreath that hangs down from the frieze. Beneath the wreath is a husk border that continues along the bottom of the frieze on the front and sides. There are two laurel fronds with berries that are tied by a crinkled ribbon as they cross underneath the border. Just below the marble, the top of the frieze is adorned on three sides with a repeating egg and dart motif. In between the egg and dart and the husk borders, motifs alternate between bundled acanthus leaves and roundels with floral rosette centers. This middle section if further bordered by beading. The front façade is separated from each of the sides by a square panel festooned with a rosette.
Directly beneath each rosette panel is a cabriolet leg with a volute top. A large acanthus leaf wraps around the top, partially obscuring the two rows of beading that borders the whorl down to foot. Emanating from the foliate center is a floral swag that drapes across the middle of the leg, connecting to identical vegetation on the other side. The front of the leg has an acanthus margent above the swag, with a long stalk of curled leaves below. The base of each leg has a rectangular joint with a floral rosette on two sides above a caulicole with a square plinth. Each of the back feet are carved in the same manner as the front feet. The legs above are half-columns with caulicole capitals and chandelle fluting that terminate in a foliate motif halfway up.
Stretchers festooned with Vitruvian waves connect each set of legs. The stretcher connecting the back legs is straight, while the one connecting the front legs is shaped. In the center of the front stretcher is a highly detailed noix (nut) featuring a lidded urn topped with a pinecone and acanthus finial. The urn has geometric shaped volute handles, with a row of beading at the base of the lid. A floral swag wraps around the urn, with similar drapes on each side that run down to the stretcher. The urn sits on a circular platform with more Vitruvian waves.
Our French Louis XVI mahogany console table was hand-carved by a master menuisier. It can be considered a finer example of the Louis XVI style, displaying a richness in ornamentation, large size, varied decorative elements, and a beautiful breche marble top. Display the console in an entryway or a living room and it will instantly command attention.
CONDITION: Good antique condition, with wear commensurate to age and use, including minor losses and separations. Light nicks and buildup to the details in the mahogany. The original marble top has old professional repairs. Please see photos for details.