The forerunners of the tripod table were the small round topped tables which were designed to support a lantern or candlesticks – a type popular in England during the second half of the 17th Century.
The tripod table was introduced in the 1730s and was made in varying sizes. Except in the smallest tripod tables, the tops are made so that they can tilt to a vertical position to fit neatly into the corner of a room. The heyday of the tripod table was the Chippendale period when they were mostly made in mahogany, with carved decoration.
Tripod tables were largely an English phenomenon and were less popular on the Continent. In England in the mid 18th Century small tripod tables were made as stands for silver tea kettles and their heaters, but undoubtedly used in the drawing room next to armchairs for other purposes, as they are still used today.
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