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Tea Table

ca. 1750
Origin: America, Massachusetts, Boston
OH: 26 1/4"; OW: 29 1/4"; OD: 17 7/8"
Mahogany, oak, white pine and cedar.
Museum Purchase
Acc. No. 1930-245
Tea table; rectangular top with molded edge and ribbed, rounded corners; band of bead molding surmounts straight skirt with broad band of rounded molding with scalloped and ogee carved lower edge; pair of rectangular slides with molded faces and central brass knobs pull out form center of each side skirt; four cabriole legs with carved C-scrolls at each side of the knee; legs terminate in pad feet on disks

Woods: Primary woods are oak and mahogany, with secondary white pine and cedar.
Label:Some of the first American tea tables were produced as trays positioned on stands. Slightly later versions like this example were made with fixed tops whose high molded edges gave the illusion of the earlier tray form. The molding helped retain the expensive ceramics that were used for serving and drinking tea.

Specialized forms such as the tea table and ceramic or silver tea wares, which included tea pots, cups and saucers, spoons, hot water urns, strainers, and slop bowls, were important components of the tea ritual.

This table originally belonged to Daniel Shute, the first minister of the South Hingham, Massachusetts, Church and delegate to the 1780 Massachusetts constitutional convention that ratified the federal constitution.
Provenance:Ex Coll: L.G. Myers; Reverend Daniel Shute was apparently the first owner; he was born in Malden, Massachusetts, on July 19, 1722. He graduated from Harvard in the class of 1743 and in 1746 was ordained as the first pastor of the newly organized third parish of Hingham, remaining in the same position until his retirement in 1799. During this time he also served as a delegate to the state constitutional convention in 1780 and as a member of the committee which ratified the federal constitution in Massachusetts. See object file for further biographical information of Daniel Shute.
Mark(s):Label under top reads: This table belonged to Daniel Shute, P. D. First Minister in the South Hingham Church.