5032 An unusual mahogany bottle carrier
Bottle trays are seldom seen, but this is unusual for several reasons. First, the sides cant outwards, second, there are no divisions for individual bottles, and third it is noticeably larger than most bottle trays.
The 'standard' bottle tray has vertical sides and divisions to hold each bottle apart from its neighbours (see bottom image of one we had some years ago and since sold). However this one never had interior divisions - possibly to take wider bottles as well as standard ones. These pieces of dining room furniture were made for a relatively brief period spanning a couple of decades either side of 1800, and particulars of pricing them when they were new was given in cabinet-makers' books of prices.
The bottle tray has been restored at some time in the past - probably 50 years or more ago, but the work is difficult to see and has been accomplished well. This has been taken into account in the pricing. It has not, however, been converted from a cutlery tray; the notches to accept the necks of the bottles are original.
I illustrated a 'standard' model in 'Great British WIne Accessories', which I illustrate together with a page from a pricing book. It can be seen that adding to the specification made the price rise quite quickly, but there is no mention on canted or sloping sides, or the having a bottle tray without divisions.
Date: c.1800 - 1820
Dimensions: 17.9" x 16.4" x 4.3" ( 45.4 x 41.7 x 11 cm.)