Dietrich Fabian, Abraham und David Roentgen, Bad Neustadt, 1996, p. 59-63.
Joseph Maria Greber, Abraham und David Roentgen, Möbel für Europe, Vol. I, Starnberg, 1980, p. 261, for a design by Roentgen for an architect's table, in Journal des Luxus und der Modern', Weimar, 1795, plate 649, reproduced here in fig. 1.
This form of table known as an architect's table or table à la tronchin was immensely popular in the late 18th century. It provided a surface for reading or writing and could be used either sitting or standing. By a system of ratchets contained in the legs, the table top could be adjusted to the required height and the writing surface adjusted to any angle and the more elaborate models were adjusted mechanically by means of a handle.
It is worthwhile noting that this table is based upon a more elaborate model, one of which had been purchased from Roentgen by King Frederick-Guillaume II of Prussia in 1786 for his son and appears in a watercolour by F.W.Klos of his son's study, circa 1830. Various models are illustrated by Fabian, op. cit., pp. 59-63, some with plain mahogany legs, others inset with brass ribbed panels with one long or two short frieze drawers. Furthermore, various models have been sold at auction and are in major museum collections: see the one in the Palace of Pavlovsk, St. Petersburg, illustrated by Fabian, op. cit., p. 59, figs. 88 and 89a; one in the Landesmuseum, Karlsruhe, Germany and in the Musée Légion d'Honneur in San Francisco.
David Roentgen (1743-1807), ébéniste-mécanicien du Roi et de la Reine 1785, Master in Paris 1780.
For further information on David Roengen see footnote to lot 173.
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