It certainly goes back to Mount Falcon, a Victorian country home in Co Mayo, Ireland, now a luxury hotel, and arrived at the February 24-25 sale at Moore Allen & Innocent (21% buyer’s premium) in Cirencester by family descent.
More piquantly, if only by repute, it was acquired by the family from Solly Joel, the Victorian/Edwardian ‘Diamond King’ of South Africa, and it also purports to have been made for the King of Siam and won in a wager.
Undisputable was the fact that it was a desirable quality piece on its own merits with its 3ft 10½in (1.18m) diameter top featuring swirling segments of specimen wood interspersed by ivory, ebony and rosewood feather banding. Supporting it was an ebony turned and reeded centre column on a carved S-scroll base to the waisted platform with a foliate carved frieze raised on carved squat bun feet.
The table showed its age with various losses, rising inlays, cracks along the joints and a split to the underside, but bidders liked it and it went to an online London buyer at a top-estimate £12,000.