The present table is part of a group finely lacquered furniture that was exported from China in the 18th and early 19th centuries. From the 17th century, oriental lacquer had been much admired in the West and together with tea, silk and porcelain, was part of a thriving trade between the ports of China, such as Canton, and Europe and the Americas. The Chinese artisans were proficient in cleverly interpreting Western taste and design, the present tables being clearly based on contemporary English models. As well as the European market, furniture in this style was also commissioned by American merchants for their families and patrons. A very similar pair of tables, now in the collection of The Society for the Preservation of New England Antiquities, The Vale, Waltham, was possibly brought back from China by a member of the Lyman family of Boston in the early 19th century. Another documented games table was made for Nicholas and Abby Brown of Providence, Rhode Island, around 1820, see Carl Crossman, The Decorative Arts of the China Trade, Woodbridge: The Antique Collectors' Club Ltd., 1991, pp270-271, pl. 147, 148. A pair of Chinese export games tables decorated in black lacquer from the collection of the Ernest and Rosemarie Kanzler Foundation, was sold in these rooms, April 18 & 19, 2002, lot 345 ($32,862).