A table thought to have been acquired for Tyrone House in Galway is attracting considerable interest at an auction by one of the world’s oldest and largest sellers of fine art and antiques. Bonhams, the privately owned British auction house, estimate the table to be worth up to €170,000.
The piece is 133cm wide, 66cm deep, and 74cm high and is described as “a fine Regency rosewood and crossbanded, ebony and brass inlaid and mounted parcel gilt library table”. The design has been attributed to Thomas Hope and its manufacture to George Oakley.
A world renowned specialist, Oakley worked for the Prince Regent at Carlton House and also supplied furniture and upholstery for the Mansion House and the Bank of England.
A closely related table by the same makers sold for £221,500 at an auction in Christie’s of London in 1997.
It is believed that Christopher French St George procured the table for Tyrone House, which was built by St George in 1779.
The furniture and contents were dispersed among family members after the death of Honoria Kane St George in 1905, the wife of Christopher French’s grandson, and the house began a period of vacancy. Tyrone House was burned down in 1920 by the IRA after they suspected it was a base for the Black and Tan army.