This exquisite table is typical of the extremely high-quality marquetry furniture produced by St Petersburg cabinetmakers in the second half of the eighteenth century, heavily influenced by the designs of German and English craftsmen such as Abraham and David Roentgen, Mayhew & Ince and the Linnell brothers. Many artisans working in the Russian capital were of German origin, notably the court cabinetmaker Christian Meyer, who in c.1795 supplied a pair of marquetry games tables with inlaid gaming surfaces comparable to that on the present lot to Catherine the Great's private apartments in the Winter Palace (sold Christie's London, July 7, 2011, lot 29, £301,250).
Another games table with similar inlay on the gaming surface is in the Kuskovo Palace, Moscow, ill. The Art of Marquetry in Eighteenth Century Russian (Moscow 1989), p.135-37.
The apocryphal stamp HACHE A GRENOBLE refers to the 18th-century cabinetmaking dynasty of the Hache family in Grenoble, whose most famous members were Pierre (1705-1776) and his son Jean-François (1730-1796). The latter is known to have trained in Paris with the royal cabinetmaker Jean-François Oeben and particularly specialized in refined Louis XV works with highly sophisticated floral marquetry designs similar to those on this table.