Updated: Oct 25, 2018
A mysterious marble table adorned with Masonic symbols is part of the antiques shown and discussed in the latest series of BBC’s Antiques Roadshow which will be screened on Sunday 30th September 2018 at 8pm.
Back in June last year, the Roadshow experts invited the Chairman of the Provincial Grand Lodge of Leicestershire and Rutland Library and Museum, W.Bro. Donald Peacock, to take the Masonic table to the Abbey Pumping Station in Leicester where filming was taking place.
The table was purchased for just over £1,000.00 from a local auction in Leicestershire. Long-standing Roadshow expert Christopher Payne, a fine art consultant specialising in furniture, asked W.Bro. Don to explain some of the Masonic significance of the symbols in the table before he gave it his full opinion.
Christopher felt that the underneath of the table was perhaps not as worn as he would have imagined for a 19th Century piece and the wooden stand had an Indian feel about it. He guessed that it might be only 40 years old.
It was previously thought, that its roots may lie in the Pietre Dure tradition which had been imported into Malta from the Italian mainland by the Knights of St John. It seems the Knights of Malta used octagonal tables for some of their meetings and our marble table continues that tradition by being some form of tracing board or other instructional device.
Don Peacock said: With this further assessment by the Antiques Roadshow experts, it still leaves us with the big questions, if the table is Indian – where did the original design come from? How did our table find its way to the East Midlands? He continued: “Of course, we have to remember that marble top and wooden base are not necessarily of the same origin. The hunt is still on!”
The value? Well you’ll just have to watch the episode to find out.